The treason of the intellectuals = by, , Norton edition, in English. [Trahison des clercs. English] The treason of the intellectuals / Julien Benda; with a new introduction by Roger Kimball; translated by Richard Aldington. p. cm. Julien Benda's classic study of s Europe resonates today. The Treason of the Intellectuals DownloadPDF MB Read online.

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The Treason of the Intellectuals book. Read 19 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Julien Benda's classic study of s Europe reson. Read "The Treason of the Intellectuals" by Julien Benda available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first download. Julien Benda's classic. Treason of the Intellectuals La Trahison Des Clercs [Julien Benda] on site. com. *FREE* Get your site here, or download a FREE site Reading App.

Only as I matured did I realise that what we were doing was letting someone else - particularly if they had deep pockets - define what constituted a significant social problem. Commercialisation of our talents in research and analysis did not make us any more relevant, just richer.

His self-image and rationalisation is one of advancing knowledge and making the world an economically more efficient place. I know this because I had this self-image and made this rationalisation for a large part of my adult life and was considered normal by my colleagues. The problem is not one of practice and professional error but one of ideals.

Human beings have always been self-centred, careerist and often nasty. But they knew when they acted badly because of the professional standards of public intellectuals. Ambition is the essential mark of character for the university graduate. Winning is the only measure of success no matter how banal, or destructive, or painful to others the competition might be.

The real damage done by a man like Trump is that he incites all around him to forget entirely that there are such things as ideals. It appears that we have reached the level of ultimate intellectual treason.


The English translation, The Treason of the Intellectuals, 1 sums it up neatly. From the time of the pre-Socratics, intellectuals, considered in their role as intellectuals, had been a breed apart. This contradiction was an honor to the human species, and formed the rift whereby civilization slipped into the world.

The Treason of the Intellectuals

More and more, intellectuals were abandoning their attachment to the traditional panoply of philosophical and scholarly ideals. One clear sign of the change was the attack on the Enlightenment ideal of universal humanity and the concomitant glorification of various particularisms.

Nor did he believe that intellectuals, as citizens, necessarily should abstain from political commitment or practical affairs. What Benda found novel was the accreditation of such cynicism by intellectuals.

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The educators of the human mind now take sides with Callicles against Socrates, a revolution which I dare to say seems to me more important than all political upheavals. The Treason of the Intellectuals is an energetic hodgepodge of a book.

Partisan in its claims for disinterestedness, it is ruthless in its defense of intellectual high-mindedness. And given the continuing echo in our own time of the problems he anatomized, the relevance of his observations to our situation can hardly be doubted. From the savage flowering of ethnic hatreds in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union to the mendacious demands for political correctness and multiculturalism on college campuses across America and Europe, the treason of the intellectuals continues to play out its unedifying drama.

About the author

In , the young French philosopher and cultural critic Alain Finkielkraut took up where Benda left off, producing a brief but searching inventory of our contemporary cataclysms. In this sense, the book is a trahison des clercs for the post-Communist world, a world dominated as much by the leveling imperatives of pop culture as by resurgent nationalism and ethnic separatism. Beginning with Benda, Finkielkraut catalogues several prominent strategies that contemporary intellectuals have employed to retreat from the universal.

A frequent point of reference is the eighteenth-century German Romantic philosopher Johann Gottfried Herder. And Finkielkraut, like Benda and, indeed, like Montaigne , tends to proceed more by collage than by demonstration. The geography of intellectual betrayal has changed dramatically in the last sixty-odd years.

The treason of the intellectuals & “The Undoing of Thought”

In , intellectuals still had something definite to betray. In the broadest terms, The Undoing of Thought is a brief for the principles of the Enlightenment. Among other things, this means that it is a brief for the idea that mankind is united by a common humanity that transcends ethnic, racial, and sexual divisions. The Frankfurt School Marxists Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno gave an exemplary but by no means uncharacteristic demonstration of one strain of this brand of anti-rational animus in the mids.

Historically, the Enlightenment arose as a deeply anti-clerical and, perforce, anti-traditional movement.

Living on a soil of substantive traditionality, the ideas of the Enlightenment advanced without undoing themselves. It did not ravage society as it would have done had society lost all legitimacy. It is this mature form of Enlightenment, championing reason but respectful of tradition, that Finkielkraut holds up as an ideal.

The treason of the intellectuals =

The process of disintegration has lately become an explicit attack on culture. This is not simply to say that there are many anti-intellectual elements in society: that has always been the case. The innovation of contemporary culture is to have obliterated the distinction between the two.

This is the undoing of thought.For them, the act which makes the State strong is invested with a moral character by the fact that it does so, and this whatever the act may be.

Formerly man was divine because he had been able to acquire the concept of justice, the idea of law, the sense of God; today he is divine because he has been able to create equipment which makes him the master of matter. Closing this work, Benda darkly predicts that the augmentation of the "realistic" impulse to domination of the material world, justified by intellectuals into an "integral realism", risked producing an all-encompassing species-civilization that would completely cease "to situate the good outside the real world".

According to Benda, this all began to change in the early twentieth century. Written two decades before The Glass Bead Game, Treason of The Intellectuals covers similar ground and makes the same point as Hesse: something has gone seriously awry with education and the uses of intellectual power.

Yet he believed that science was superior to literature as a method of inquiry. What little Lolitas read is as good as Lolita.

I know this because I had this self-image and made this rationalisation for a large part of my adult life and was considered normal by my colleagues. Winning is the only measure of success no matter how banal, or destructive, or painful to others the competition might be.

At one point early in my career I was a member of an academic institute at the University of Pennsylvania.

WENDI from Eugene
Look over my other articles. I take pleasure in collecting antiques. I do relish famously .