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trahison des clercs


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from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French: trahison ("treason") + des ("of the") (a contraction of de ("of") + les ("the” (pl.), “hoi")) + clercs ("clerks”, “scholars") = treason of the clerks; originally adopted from the title of the French philosopher and novelist Julien Benda’s 1927 book La Trahison des Clercs (whose first English translation bore the title The Betrayal of the Intellectuals).


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  • T.H.E.: 'Is this a true trahison des clercs, a selling of the pass by an academic establishment too alienated from politics to care or too worried about their careers to take a risk? Or is it the death by a hundred cuts that has crept up on us when we weren't looking? It hardly matters, for the result is the same - power in the hands of those whose interests are driven not by the pursuit of knowledge but by the pursuit of wealth.'

    April 16, 2009