Roots and Resilience in Weil, Kołakowski, Todorov, and Finkielkraut


This paper studies selected writings of prominent European intellectuals regarding the matter of cultural roots and uprootedness. Simone Weil attributes to uprootedness many ills of the twentieth century induced by the dominant State culture that tends to uproot a subject from their intimate environment. The ultimate results are alienation and violence. Leszek Kołakowski and Tzvetan Todorov, two thinkers who lived the experience of uprootedness caused by their immigrant status, reflected on the directions the world might take after the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989. Alain Finkielkraut argues for the preservation of a genuine pluralism of ideas in our contemporary multicultural democratic society. The underlying common concern of these authors is the modern world at a crossroads, lost in its ideological entanglements, far from fulfilling the promise of a better, more open, and inclusive democratic reality. Kołakowski refers to this crisis as a spiritual recession—and the other three would very likely agree with this assessment.

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Matthew Motyka, University of San Francisco, United States

Paper Information
Conference: IICAH2022
Stream: Philosophy

This paper is part of the IICAH2022 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Motyka M. (2022) Roots and Resilience in Weil, Kołakowski, Todorov, and Finkielkraut ISSN: 2432-4604 – The IAFOR International Conference on Arts & Humanities – Hawaii 2022 Official Conference Proceedings
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