Simone Weil and psychology of evil lectures set June 18, 25

June 12, 2018

The Rehoboth Beach Writers’ Guild and Lewes library will host a free, two-part lecture on Simone Weil and the Psychology of Evil, set for 9:30 to 11 a.m., Monday, June 18 and 25. The lecturer is Ronald Collins, who has authored 10 books and is working on a new one titled “On Attention: Reading the Philosophy of Simone Weil.”

Weil (1909-43) was a thinker and activist like no other. Because of her leftist political activism, some called her “the Red Virgin.” She was a student of classical and modern history, science and literature, and a revolutionary who seriously asked why revolutions don’t work. She was a combatant in the Spanish Civil War, a laborer in French fields and factories, a member of the French Resistance in London in 1943, and, in the last years of her life, a mystic.

The first lecture will focus on the life and times of Simone Weil
. The second lecture will focus on  two of her greatest essays: “The Power of Words” (1937) and “The Iliad or Poem of Force” (1945). In the first essay, Weil explored and explained the psychology of evil born of words devoid of meaning, while in the second, she examined the domain of force and how it seizes those who wield it in ways that invite the cruelest of wrongs against humankind.

Questions and comments are invited to foster an open dialogue.  

Although the lecture is free, RSVPs are required as seats are limited. To RSVP, call the Lewes library at 302-645-2733 or go to, click on Ron Collins on the event page and follow directions to sign up.