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The Treason of the Intellectuals

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  248 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Julien Benda's classic study of 1920s Europe resonates today. The "treason of the intellectuals" is a phrase that evokes much but is inherently ambiguous. The book bearing this title is well known but little understood. This edition is introduced by Roger Kimball.

From the time of the pre-Socratics, intellectuals were a breed apart. They were non-materialistic knowledge-see
Paperback, 244 pages
Published October 15th 2006 by Routledge (first published 1927)
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A Century of Further Decline

Several days ago I posted a review of my re-reading of Hermann Hesse’s The Glass Bead Game. Re-entering that magical sphere, I recalled this piece by Julien Benda. 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. One can only observe that, if anything, the situation has become worse since Hesse and Be
Sep 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: أخرى
"يعاني العالم دائماً من تكذيبه للحقيقة المجردة."— تشارلز رينوفير ( فيلسوف فرنسي)

كتاب المرحلة، يصف ما نشهده اليوم من مواقف متلونة و متبدلة للعديد من المثقفين ( مثقف السلطة أو المثقف الشكلي)، في ظل الواقع العربي السياسي -الاجتماعي الراهن، وما تمر به المنطقة العربية من تحولات كبرى، وصراعات، وحرائق، وتبدلات في المواقف الفاعلة.

في هذه المرحلة التاريخية الحساسة التي تعصف بمستقبل وآمال الفرد العربي في المنطقة، بتنا نجهل الطريق إلى أين؟ و لا إلى أين نحن ماضون؟،…
أين الوجهة؟، وما الطريق !؟ ومن نحن؟، حقاً
Constantin C.
Jan 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Egalitariștii din zilele noastre, neînțelegând că nu poate exista egalitate decât în abstract și că esența concretului este inegalitatea, și-au dovedit, dincolo de remarcabila lor stângăcie politică, și extraordinara grosolănie de spirit. (p. 88)

(...) faptul că astăzi în special oamenii de litere, în imensa lor majoritate, blamează liberalismul se numără printre fenomenele moderne care vor uimi cel mai mult istoria (...). Fascinați de statul puternic, aceștia au proslăvit statul disciplinat de t
Sep 05, 2010 rated it did not like it
A passionate, poorly argued hodge-podge on the anti-enlightenment trends of the interwar French intelligentsia that gathered around men like Charles Maurras and L' Action Française. The thesis is interesting -- though not entirely persuasive -- but the book is better known than read. The Introduction is written in the style of some sort of Straussian cant and is a complete waste of time.
رائد العيد

مهما وصل الإنسان إلى مراحل عالية في الوعي ستظل لديه منافذ لتسريب المفاهيم والقناعات إلى اللاواعي دون خضوعها لتفكير نقدي.

أقول تسريب المفاهيم تهوينًا من فتح الأبواب لها على مصراعيها فهذا أردى وأسوأ.

خيانة المثقفين من المواضيع التي يتراشقها العامة والمثقفون أنفسهم، فالعاميّ يضخم ما يرى من تصرفات سيئة لبعض المنتمين لأي حقل فينسبه لكل أهل ذلك الحقل، والمثقف يحاول أن يدافع عن نفسه ويُبعده عنها التُهم بإسقاط غيره فيها.

البحث عن المكانة وتحقيق المصالح المادية سببان رئيسيان لكل حالات التقلّبات الفكرية و
Jul 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Even though the first edition of this book was in 1927, which can seem ancient, but the main issues that it adresses are still alive today, and are still a problem. Intellectuals are prone to politics and their own interests, the majority of people does not think beyond their primary needs and interests ... Who is going to protect humanity from its own stupidity, greed, its dangerous narrow national interests and wrong choices? Who is going to think outside the box, and want something moral and ...more
Alexander Smith
Truthfully, this book does not say very much. What has been said here, if it were not a work of history, could have been argued in all of 20 pages. This is not to say that what is has said is not relevant or important. However, there is a slight oddity in that the very thesis of the book seems to fail at its own goal. If this book is reported as a work of a 'clerc', then it is a failure. Thus, I choose to not see it as such, but rather an interested (as opposed to disinterested, as the book woul ...more
Mar 02, 2007 rated it it was amazing
one of the most prophetic secular books ever.
Apr 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is AMAZING. I read it because it was mentioned - as Traison de clercs, and I mean, how could you not pause on a title that awesome - in Said's 'Orientalism', which I am reading alongside (and after) this. This is a 'short' (in terms of wordcount, not metaphysical heft) treatise written in the late 1920s about the rise of nationalism. And we all know how well that worked out for Europe ten years later.

His hypothesis is that the reason this happened is that the 'clerks' (which is how he
Dec 29, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aparuta, pentru prima data in 1927, apartinind unui scriitor al carui nume e astazi (pe nedrept) aproape uitat, Tradarea carturarilor porneste de la premisa ca politicul (intruchipare a viziunii reale sau practice a existentei) tinde sa acapareze si sa anihileze artisticul (dimensiunea dezinteresata sau metafizica a existentei) cu ajutorul chiar al "carturarilor" (les clercs - cei devotati sferei spiritului, adica cei care, desprinsi de existenta practica, apara o forma de ideal situata in arta, ...more
Raimo Wirkkala
Jun 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Fight through the dated references to what was then recent history and the even-more-voluminous references to French writers/philosophers, and the reader will be rewarded with the realization that the author managed the very important task of writing a book that has proven to be prescient and timeless. The observations made in 1920's France echo even to this day.
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Σχολιασμός του βιβλίου από μένα: ...more
Wahyu Krisyanto
Sep 27, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: essai
I read Indonesian version, -Pengkhiantan Kaum Cendikiawan-.

Mohammed  Hassan
انتهيت مؤخرا من قراءة كتاب " خيانة المثقفين" وعلى الرغم من أن الطبعة الأولى لهذا الكتاب كانت في عام 1927، والتي يمكن أن تبدو قديمة ، إلا أن القضايا الرئيسية التي يعالجها الكاتب لا تزال قائمة حتى اليوم، يعرف جوليان بيندا، المثقفين في كتابه بأنه " اولئك الذين لا يسعون وراء المصالح والمكاسب، بل يجدون سعادتهم في ممارسة فن او مزاولة علم او البحث في نظريات ما وراء الطبيعة، وتتلخص سعادتهم في الترفع عن ملذات الحياة" فالمثقف هو “الشخص الذي تحركه قناعاته بمبادئ الحقيقة والعدالة، ورغبته في إدانة الفساد وال ...more
Justin Goodman
Sep 26, 2020 rated it it was ok
2.5? Probably not?

I'm sympathetic to the sensitivity Benda had to the cultural shift happening in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century, and respect the precision he had in partially diagnosing what we would later come to know as fascism. There's even something admirably sad about the scornful indignation that is Benda recounting how the "clercs" - "Intellectuals" - this once noble class of universalist, anti-worldly people have succumbed to the nationalist fervor and "pragmatic" "realism"
Cristina Turcanu
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
هشام العبيلي
- حتى ينطبق اسم المثقف على مسماه، فلا بد أن يكون حامل هذا اللقب منفرداً أو لنقل هو في المعارضة دائماً، فمن سمات المثقف المثاليةُ الأخلاقية، فلا تميل به المشاعر السياسية ولو كان ذلك في صالح وطنه، فهو أبداً شخص مستقل، فكل من يميل إلى ممالأة السلطة فقد فَقَدَ روح المثقف.
- المثقف لا يتبنى التحيّز الوطني ضد الآخرين (الأجانب)، فالمثقف إنسانيٌ يتسامى فوق الوطنية، المثقف الحق ليس قومياً.
-هذا الكتاب موجه ضد المثقف القومي، الذي من سماته سعيه إلى بناء ثقافة خاصة بقُطره، مغايرة ومنافسة لثقافة القوميات الأخر
هيا نقرأ
Jan 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
‏ننتظر من المثقف أن يكون الدرع الأول في وجه كل ظلم وأن يقف مع الحق أيّ كان مصدره.
‏يسلط جوليان بيندا في كتابه المهم خيانة المثقفين الضوء على انهيار المثقف في هذا العصر ويحدد سببين مهمين في ذلك:
‏١- تحقيق المصلحة المادية
‏٢- الحصول على التقدير

‏أن المشاعر السياسية تكتسب قوة أكبر عندما تتحد مع مشاعر أخرى، مشاعر ذات تعددية وتتسم بالثبات والقوة. (العرقية والطبقية والقومية)

‏من أسباب تدهور دور المثقف.
‏١- مركزية الدولة
‏٢- ظهور القوميات
‏٣- دوافع الرغبة في النجاح الفني
‏٤- تراجع الأدب الكلاسيكي والذي كان يزرع
ألّف الكتاب في 1927م ومهم لحظ هذا حتى يتوازن الحكم عليه.
قدم له الأستاذ محمد شعبان، وأطنب وأطال بحديث مكرور ومسجوع في أزود من ٤٠ صفحة! لا تكاد تخرج منها بشيء.
في الفصلين الأولين قدم المؤلف لفكرة المشاعر السياسة بأكثر من جهة، في الفصل الثالث يبدأ الطحن وهي خلاصة الكتاب ورسالة مؤلفه فيما أعتقد وتتلخص في نقد البراغماتية، وانقلاب المفاهيم، والأفكار الحديثة للعدالة والتي غزت قيم المثقفين، كما ركز على دعوته للإنسانية والتي هي إذ ذاك مذهب غض.
والمفارقة أنك لن تخطئ تحامل هذا الفرنسي القاسي في وجه الألمان
Eva Sevrin
Jun 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really interesting perspective on the role of intellectuals within society, however the structure is a bit chaotic from time to time. Basically a critique on intellectuals who let themselves be led by ‘political passions’, which stops them from valueing the universal (and leads to nationalism etc). The predictions in the work became reality in the most devestating ways (holocaust), but perhaps the scary part is that is still so relevant to contemporary issues faced today.
Maria Fernanda
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Apesar de ter tido dificuldade com o ritmo do livro, o conteúdo é pertinente e esclarecedor quanto às mudanças de mentalidade do povo, suas consequências e suas razões.
Nick Swarbrick
Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, lit-crit
I am not generous with my five stars, so this gets relegated to my broad 2:1 category. I'm not sure this kind of crude system really works for a book of such amazing prescience, but for anyone who thought - as I did - that Benda was going to explore intellectual failures, the decapitation of learning, I have to say "This Is Not That Book" - or at any rate, not the book you might have expected.
I first met the phrase "Trahison des Clercs" in C S Lewis, and apart from the eye-opening similarities
Manuel Barrios
Aug 02, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Una magnífica reflexión sobre en qué momento, a caballo entre los siglos XIX y XX, los intelectales traicionaron su misión de servir a la verdad y se vendieron a causas como la nación o la clase...
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Julien Benda (26 December 1867 – 7 June 1956) was a French philosopher and novelist. He remains famous for his short book, La Trahison des Clercs (The Treason of the Intellectuals or The Betrayal of the Intellectuals). He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature four times.

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