The Iliad or the Poem of Force
Simone Weil began writing The Iliad, or the Poem of Force in 1939, and completed it in the fall of 1940, after the fall of France to Hitler's Germany. It may be read as a commentary on that tragedy, but its relevance and message are continuing and universal: "And so pitilessly as might crushes, so pitilessly it maddens whoever possesses, or believes he possesses it." The essay was first published in Marseilles, in the December 1940 and January 1941 issues of the literary monthly Cahiers du Sud. It was translated by Mary McCarthy and published by Dwight Macdonald in the November 1945 issue of Politics, and as a pamphlet; and by Pendle Hill as Pendle Hill Pamphlet Number 91 (Wallingford, PA: Pendle Hill Publications, 1957).
Published by The Lapis Press, Emeryville, California, 40 pages, 10 3/4 in. x 6 12 in., hardcover