Simone Weil

1909-1943. French Jewish writer, social and political activist, and religious seeker. A graduate of the école Normale Supérieure, she employed her talents as a teacher for a time, then took a position of laborer in order to identify with the worker, and later joined the International Brigade against Franco in the Spanish Civil War. She was forced to flee France during World War II, but soon returned from the United States to London to work for the Free French government. Because of an empathetic, forced diet, death came at the age of thirty-four. Her agnostic and anticlerical position was weakened during the latter part of her life by a sincere attraction to Christianity. Until her death she was torn between the two positions. In her writings she makes clear her continued “waiting for God.”