for Political Philosophy

How can we seek a politics that truly aims at the common good?

The crisis of the neoliberal world order presents an opportunity to imagine a humane post-liberal politics for Russia and the West. 

The Simone Weil Center exists to foster dialogue and political thought about this post-liberal politics of the future. At home, we look forward to a domestic politics that cares as much about our common lives as citizens as our private interests as individuals and consumers, while abroad we promote an international order in which the heights of varied cultures and spiritual traditions are maintained rather than flattened.

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"So, let us not be blind to our differences—but let us also direct attention to our common interests and the means by which those differences can be resolved. And if we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity. For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s futures. And we are all mortal."

- John F. Kennedy

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The problem

The Western world has become uprooted from the sources of its own health. And as Simone Weil predicted, it has therefore long been in the business of uprooting others. For decades, the Western model of corporate liberal democracy has been forced on countries through advertisements, regime change and everything in between. This has been in the name of “modernization” and “development,” but the result has often been to force people to relinquish local tradition to become consumers and laborers for international corporations. 

Our approach

The neoliberal world order is tottering. What will come after it?

How can we, as post-liberals, hold on to what is of permanent value in the liberal political order?

Can we refuse to allow all local cultures and customs and forms of government to be remade in the image of the liberal West, without falling prey to a relativism about all questions of political order?

These are the questions the Simone Weil Center is dedicated to answering.

We are

1. Facilitating face to face meetings with leading scholars from Russia and the West

2. Promoting an ongoing exchange of ideas by creating a central, multilingual website for the exchange of substantive scholarly writings

3. Working with policymakers and those involved in civic, educational and economic projects at the local and international levels to bring these ideas to bear on the concrete circumstances of the present day