Martina Bengert, Thomas Sojer, and Max Walther work together in collaboration and conduct research jointly. Their work on Simone Weil has led to the belief that Simone Weil’s œuvre can no longer be “mansplained” by established scholars exclusively. On the contrary, her thinking calls for a transsubjective, never finished and fragile biotope, that ultimately knows “nothing,” while being in a constant state of growth and negotiation. In doing so, this complex system of thought dynamizes the creative potential of the in-between. Bengert, Sojer and Walther’s reading of Simone Weil yields the question what kind of sentient, thinking life inhabits this biotope. 

Created by potrace 1.16, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2019

La collectivité est plus puissante que l’individu dans tous les domaines, sauf un seul: penser.

Cahier I, ms. 9
Œuvres complètes VI.I, Paris 1994, 78



The “trans | discipline Simone Weil denʞkollektiv” was founded in 2019 by Martina Bengert (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin), Max Walther (Bauhaus Universität Weimar) and Thomas Sojer (Max Weber-Kolleg Erfurt). As an egalitarian, international platform, it connects scholars, students, artists and media workers in close cooperation with the American Weil Society and the Association pour l’Étude de la Pensée de Simone Weil.

The denʞkollektiv aims to build up an extensive network of people of various professions and interests working on the French philosopher-mystic Simone Weil (1909-1943). This network explores Weil’s œuvre from a transdisciplinary perspective, organising research projects and various events, such as the metaxy[l]ophon. In addition, the denʞkollektiv publishes contributions of diverse formats (e.g. podcasts and papers) on its homepage and organises discussion forums and reading groups in order to put collaborative research into practice. Different digital applications are used to support the denʞkollektiv’s dialogue-based work (publication, debate and discussion), which transcends boundaries subject to space and time.


Prof. Dr.
Martina Bengert

Juniorprofessorin für Literatur, Religion und Geschlechterstudien in den romanischen Kulturen

Max Walther

Promovend am Graduiertenkolleg Medienanthropologie an der Bauhaus-Universität Weimar.

Tom Sojer

Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter an der Professur Philosophie, Katholisch-Theologische Fakultät Erfurt

Created by potrace 1.16, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2019

Quant à ne pas lire, c’est impossible […] .

« Essai sur la notion de lecture »

Œuvres complètes IV.I, Paris 2008, 75



“Simone Weil revisited. Partizipative Forschung und Lehre als Denkwege zwischen Berlin und Wien“


Collaboration between Humboldt-University Berlin and the University of Vienna, funded by Humboldt Virtual Academic Collaboration/HUVAC


Our overarching goal is to engage in research on Simone Weil and create an open dialogue around her as a philosopher, activist and mystic, resulting in an international framework that includes rather than excludes.

The immense complexity of her writings requires interdisciplinary, diversity-conscious and international research collaboration which takes into account her multilingualism (ancient Greek, German, English, French, Italian, Latin, Portuguese, Sanskrit, Spanish), the discourse collage of philosophy, religion, history, culture, mathematics, geography, astrology, physics, medicine, theatre, art and music as well as their intercultural and historical transpositions. The aim is not to merely focus on short temporary gatherings (such as conferences or workshops), but to create ongoing, sustainable and long-term research groups that have the tools to engage with the polyperspectivity of Weil’s work.

We consider university as a place of endless possibilities where creative processes take place in an inclusive way. For that reason, it is important to us to foster a collaborative working climate in which we constantly encourage one another to question hierarchies and organisational arrangements.

Thus, we envision a type of collaboration in which students, young academics (PhD students), post-docs and professors work together and develop structures that enable the acquisition of knowledge. By bringing together these different perspectives and backgrounds, we hope to achieve diversity, continuity and creativity in the reconstruction or further development of academic life, teaching and learning.

The HUVAC collaboration focuses on three main areas:


Hybrid Collaborative Teaching

Promotion of Young Researchers


In Winter Term 2020/2021, three digital seminars revolving around Simone Weil took place. The instructors opened up one session each for students of the other seminars in order to collectively deepen the students’ knowledge of Simone Weil. Both instructors and students found the joint sessions extremely enriching and stimulating as these sessions created an awareness of various interdisciplinary approaches to Weil’s texts. These synergies ultimately inspired a special student workshop entitled “Arbeit an Simone Weil” (“Working on Simone Weil”), which was held on 26 March 2021 via Zoom.

At two different events, young researchers gathered to discuss their ideas with established researchers at an eye-to-eye level. These events comprised a digital workshop in March 2021 and the in-person workshop “Attention. Öffnungen durchqueren nach Simone Weil” (“Attention. Crossing openings with Simone Weil”) at the University of Vienna. Moreover, the reading groups organised by Thomas Sojer fostered an inspiring learning environment for present and future Simone Weil scholars.

We envision the Parcours as an interactive academic online glossary of the central concepts present in Simone Weil’s writings. It serves as a tool to access the work of Simone Weil in its relational complexity.


Johanna studies English and French at HU Berlin. She is a research assistant at the HUVAC-project, where she is responsible for this lovely website, various organisational tasks and other day-to-day jobs that need to be done in order to support the other members. In addition to Simone Weil’s writings, she is passionate about linguistics, postcolonial studies and intersectional feminism.

Esther Ramharter is an Associate Professor at the Department of Philosophy and member of the Council of the Research Platform “Religion and Transformation on Contemporary Society”, both of which are based at the University of Vienna, and she likes Philosophy very much.

Martina is a Junior Professor of Literature, Religion, and Gender Studies (Institute of Romance Studies) at Humboldt University Berlin. She is also one of the founding members of the Simone Weil denʞkollektiv.

Sandra Lehmann is a Postdoc at the Department of Intercultural Philosophy of Religion, Faculty of Catholic Theology, University of Vienna. In her research she focuses on developing a dynamic metaphysics based on a hyperbolic understanding of being. In addition, she deals with questions of political self-sacrifice, using early Christian martyrdom as a starting point of reference.

Created by potrace 1.16, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2019

Aussi peut-on discuter sans fin sur la réalité du monde extérieur. Car ce que nous appelons monde, ce sont des significations que nous lisons; cela n’est donc pas réel.

« Essai sur la notion de lecture »

Œuvres complètes IV.I, Paris 2008, 74



Prof. Dr. Martina Bengert

Institut für Romanistik
Sprach- und literaturwissenschaftliche Fakultät
Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Unter den Linden 6
10099 Berlin


+49 30 2093 73568



Created by potrace 1.16, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2019

La collectivité est plus puissante que l’individu dans tous les domaines, sauf un seul: penser.

Cahier I, ms. 9
Œuvres complètes VI.I, Paris 1994, 78