Conversations with


Title: The Last Dialogue

Author: Accounting with Sartre

Translator: Jalal Sattari

Publisher: Center

Subject: Interviews, Sartre

Age category: Adult

Cover: Paperback

Number of pages: 84 p

Language Farsi



Conversations with is the text of one of the last interviews of Jean-Paul Sartre (1980-1905), a French philosopher, with Lonovol Observatory, published in 1980 in three consecutive issues. In this candid dialogue, Sartre, in all the concepts he has devised and which has influenced several generations of intellectuals, politicians and millions of readers, argues and questions everyone.

Sartre sees human life as a failure, meaning that he does not succeed in what he wants to do. In fact, Sartre reaches a kind of absolute pessimism. One of the topics of this conversation is the fate of his works in comparison with his decision and will.

Conversations with

Changing Sartre’s thinking about issues such as moral conscience is another issue that is questioned by the interviewer. Dialectical wisdom critique is another topic of the book. In the discussion of democracy, Sartre looks at democracy as a whole and seeks to see what the relationship is between democracy and fraternity.

Jean-Paul Charles Imar Sartre (June 21, 1905 – April 15, 1980) was a French philosopher, existentialist, novelist, playwright, and critic. Sartre was born on June 21, 1905 in Paris. 1906) was a French naval officer, and his mother, Anne-Marie Schweizer (1882–1969), was the cousin of the famous Nobel Peace Prize-winning physician Albert Schweizer. His parents in Madonna Returning to his grandfather, Charles Schweizer, one of Albert Schweizer’s uncles, taught German at school. In fact, he developed cataracts, gradually deviated from the outside, and lost his sight.

The Last Book of Interview with Sartre: The Last Open Book of Our Interview is a conversation between the young and rude Bani Levy, which was published after his death. remained….
Jean-Paul Sartre died on April 15, 1980, at the age of seventy-five. Published is probably the last words he remembers. In this frank dialogue, the master, in all the concepts he has invented and which has impressed several generations of intellectuals, politicians and millions of readers, argues and questions everyone, as if he has not yet said his last word. And what he has said is not a revelation.

Twentieth-century philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre (1980-1905) is a familiar name to those who read and write in the fields of literature, thought, politics, and philosophy. Perhaps in the current “intellectual fashion”, instead of great names such as Hegel, Russell, Marx, Sartre and Camus, the names of newer philosophers have reached the ears of seekers and researchers; Like Lyotard, Foucault, Derrida and the like; But Sartre’s tireless way of reading and thinking and his anarchist spirit have made him one of the most prominent philosophical thinkers. His name is always associated with the school of thought of existentialism.

Conversations with

The last dialogue is a series of interviews of a young philosopher named Bani Levy with Jean-Paul Sartre. Levy was his secretary from 1973 until the end of Sartre’s life; Because from that year on, the great French philosopher was in danger of blindness and could no longer read or write. Prior to these interviews, Levy collaborated with Sartre under the pseudonym Pierre Victoria, alongside Philippe Gavie, to write and publish The Rebellion, the Right of All of Us (1974).

The last interview – apparently Sartre’s last interview on philosophical topics – was published under the title “Hope Now” in the three issues of the magazine he described. Many of Sartre’s relatives – like his constant enemies – because they were unaware of the course of his reasoning, rejected his words in this dialogue and considered them to be due to his “old idiocy”; But like his other books, which are less well-read, these words were misunderstood. Going deeper into this dialogue, we see the same effort we heard from Sartre in establishing the philosophy of “freedom” in Sartre’s valuable book Existence and Non-Existence.

Levy’s tone in this last conversation is very intimate, sometimes sharp and frank. Undoubtedly, his seven-year association with Sartre (until the end of the philosopher’s life) also subconsciously influenced the young philosopher’s tone of voice and position. Levy’s dialogue is as if he intends to either trap Sartre in the maze of his thoughts or perhaps free him from intellectual impasses. He has consistently criticized Sartre’s past statements and his current stance. The fact that my fiancé has changed Sartre’s attitude with every social or political event has caused him to attack her. Sometimes he asked the old philosopher to change his position from the experience of old age; Sometimes leading him to admit the failure of his ideas; Sometimes he was closer to her and sometimes he organized Sartre’s thoughts.

Conversations with

Sartre, on the other hand, has sometimes acknowledged his mistakes, knowing the need for Levy to be by his side calmly; Once considered Levy’s interpretation incorrect; Elsewhere he confirms his words; Sometimes asked for his help; And in some cases, the place of the questioner and the respondent has changed. It is Sartre who asks Levy and it is Levy who answers Sartre. The philosopher himself has acknowledged that in years of physical disability to read and write requires the presence of a young and thoughtful Levy far beyond the presence of a secretary. Levy’s daily conversation with Sartre not only maintained the philosopher’s connection with his readers, but also served as an example of the reaction of readers to Sartre’s texts through his critiques of his sayings and writings.
Most importantly, since Levy began to think philosophically at the age of fifteen by reading Sartre’s works, his presence is very appropriate for him; Because he occasionally remembers Sartre’s last words; And thus, he can re-read himself. His self-criticism in this dialogue is courageous and very shocking to limited minds. He did not hesitate to say that in the period under the influence of the political atmosphere, he repeated the words of Kierkegaard, although he strongly opposed it or was influenced by Heidegger’s thought, albeit indirectly. Throughout these questions and answers is seen the characteristic of a philosophical humanist, who is thinking and changing even in his old age.

Sartre’s work in this interview is to express new definitions of old themes. With the decline of the “leftist” movement in France and its eventual defeat, Sartre’s view also changed direction. He acknowledged that “the dream of world change is no longer possible; “But it is possible to lead a person to change his life.” In this dialogue he returns to his philosophical tradition; That is the moral tradition. He did not believe in the morality of the Christian religion; Neither Eastern nor Jewish ideas; And not to classical ethics in the works of Aristotle or Kant. In his view, morality is “the desire of society.” But in this dialogue, he believes that “in order to define morality, society must also be redefined.” In his definition of morality, Sartre considers conscience and self-consciousness to have an area and dimension, which he calls compulsion.
In Sartre’s view, this word means that “man, after knowing and being aware of something, finds in himself a kind of obligatory request that goes beyond reality. Thus, everything he does involves some kind of internal compulsion; “Not because what he does is valuable, but because in every purpose where there is a conscience, the subconscious demands compulsion.” According to him, “This is the origin of morality. Every conscience has this moral realm; But so far no one was able to send in the perfect solution, which is not strange. Because man is constantly in the presence of others, the conscience of one person becomes the conscience of another. “And it binds him to a moral character.”

Conversations with

In search of the social and real goals of morality, Sartre has again approached leftist ideas and thought of rewriting leftist principles and laws. Sartre’s hatred of the right wing and its relative victory over the left wing added to his grief and sorrow to help rewrite the principles of the left wing more quickly in finding a moral plan for future generations; Because he believes that “leftists’ understanding of Marxism is very wrong and has been misinterpreted.”

In addition, the widespread ambiguous reflection in this interview remains suspended; Like his two previous books, Critique of Dialectical Wisdom and Books on Ethics. It is as if the outstanding works of this prolific, violent and book-eating philosopher are doomed to incompleteness. And perhaps this is the incomplete feature that now makes this interview exciting and readable.

Another valuable point of this book is Sartre’s concern for finding a way out of Marxist thought from its current impasse. Although he was never a member of any party, he was always attached to the French Communist Party. As he was called “Comrade of the Way”. Sartre himself admitted in this conversation that “the left no longer exists; “Because the voters have lost hope in the left groups.” But the philosopher’s affiliation with the left is clear by the end of the interview. Levy took advantage of this Achilles heel of Sartre, criticizing him on the one hand for being “partisan” and on the other hand criticizing the impasse of Sartre’s thought about Marxism.
Levy saw his dialogue with Marxism as erosive, and his association with the revolutionaries as a context that led to Sartre’s dualistic system and instead of dialogue to the party-minded intellectual; Because such an intellectual inevitably ignores the obvious and unforgettable mistakes of the party and closes his eyes to its vulgarity and hangs himself on it. Nevertheless, it is surprising to Levy that after the destruction of such a party, the intellectual seeks to find new laws and solutions to rewrite the left movement.

Conversations with

By admitting his mistakes, Sartre intends to redefine and rewrite old concepts such as history, assertiveness, society and the will of society, intellectualism, democracy, fraternity and morality. He spoke of his fifty-year-old aversion to parties, saying “they have always dictated ideas from above and therefore do not have the truth.” While self-critical, he described his association with the French Communist Party as a “failure of his ideas,” although his purpose was to “unite human beings and not branch out to achieve the transcendent collective goal.” In this human solidarity, Sartre seeks to find a new definition of the concepts that society needs to achieve its aspirations; Including: Democracy and Brotherhood and Ethics.
Sartre certainly does not mean democracy, the false democracy of the Fifth Republic; It has nothing to do with the socio-economic relations that Marx envisioned. The concept of democracy has also been redefined in this dialogue. He did not consider democracy to be merely a political form of government; Because “in fact, the rule of the people has no objective existence.” He has seen the present man as isolated and alone as a result of the division of labor. That is why he believes that “democracy should be a way of life and should be considered the only way to live right.”

Conversations with

Along with the definition of democracy, the concept of brotherhood has also been formed. In Sartre’s view, “brotherhood has a genuine but very complex theme.” He has gone beyond the term stereotypes of a brother on the left, and in the course of this dialogue has reached a new meaning for brotherhood and the intention of brotherhood. Sartre described man as too independent in Existence and Non-Existence; But in an interview with Levy, he admitted that “every human being is dependent on another human being and in the present age it must be received and preserved.”
“In his definition,” all the people of the earth are brothers; “Not in the mythical or religious sense, but in the sense of neighborliness and solidarity of a species called man.” He believes that “human beings should consider themselves as both originals and roots; Because the origin and root of all human beings and the beginning and the end of all are one. Everything that has been done thousands of years ago and has reached the hands of modern man shows the same solidarity. “And that is true brotherhood.”

One of Sartre’s readable and audible works is that he always has external examples for his thoughts. This method of philosophizing has caused his plays to become popular over time. In this conversation, he used the example of Levy and himself to show the degree of dependence and independence of human beings to each other, using the same method as before.

Sartre addresses other issues in this conversation; Including: revolutionary determination, humanism, popular vote, violence, saviorism, Judaism.

In addition to these concepts, he also referred to historical events; Including: Algerian Liberation and Anti-Colonial Movement, Vietnam War, 1979 Iranian Revolution, the issue of Shoah and the history of the French people.

Throughout this conversation, we see the unified mind of a writer who wanted to do social work based on ethics. That childhood dream of “becoming a great writer” – far from the dream of immortality – is to give a new definition to people and the world. He humbly considers many of his speeches to be discarded for the future, but he wishes that some of his writings would remain and be effective. He has sometimes found himself victorious and sometimes defeated in expressing his thoughts; But more than his own failure, he worries about the stalemate that others have fallen into. Nevertheless, he sincerely hopes for a common future and remains busy. He has always sought the disintegration of wholes to rebuild new wholes.

The Last Dialogue is a small but clever book, far removed from the peculiarities of philosophical writing. Thanks to the eloquent translation and style of Master Jalal Sattari and the presence of Bani Levy, it can be considered as a summary of the evolution of the thought of Jean-Paul Sartre, who is considered by many to be the most influential French philosopher of the twentieth century.

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