Simone de Beauvoir

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Beauvoir, Simone de

(sēmôn` də bōvwär`), 1908–86, French author. A leading exponent of existentialismexistentialism
, any of several philosophic systems, all centered on the individual and his relationship to the universe or to God. Important existentialists of varying and conflicting thought are Søren Kierkegaard, Karl Jaspers, Martin Heidegger, Gabriel Marcel, and Jean-Paul
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, she is closely associated with Jean-Paul SartreSartre, Jean-Paul
, 1905–80, French philosopher, playwright, and novelist. Influenced by German philosophy, particularly that of Heidegger, Sartre was a leading exponent of 20th-century existentialism.
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, with whom she had a life-long relationship. Beauvoir taught philosophy at several colleges until 1943, after which she devoted herself to writing. Her novels All Men Are Mortal (1946, tr. 1955), The Blood of Others (1946, tr. 1948), and The Mandarins (1955, tr. 1956) are interpretations of the existential dilemma. Among her most celebrated works is the profound analysis of the status of women, The Second Sex (1949–50, tr. 1953). This pivotal text was cut by some 15 percent when first translated; an unabridged English translation was finally published in 2010. Beauvoir's study The Marquis de Sade (tr. 1953) is a brilliant, perceptive portrait. Her monumental treatise The Coming of Age (1970, tr. 1972) is an exhaustive historical consideration of the social treatment of the aged in many cultures. Beauvoir's autobiographical writings include Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter (1958, tr. 1959), The Prime of Life (tr. 1962), Force of Circumstance (1963, tr. 1964), A Very Easy Death (1964, tr. 1966), and All Said and Done (tr. 1974). She also edited Sartre's letters to her (tr. 1994).


See biography by D. Bair (1990); S. de Beauvoir, ed., Quiet Moments in a War: The Letters of Jean-Paul Sartre to Simone de Beauvoir, 1940–1963 (1994); studies by E. Marks (1973), L. Appignanesi (1988), R. Winegarten (1988), K. and E. Fullbrook (1994), and H. Rowley (2005).

de Beauvoir, Simone


Beauvoir, Simone de


Born Jan. 9, 1908, in Paris. French writer.

Beauvoir graduated from the literary faculty at Paris and from 1931 to 1943 taught philosophy in lycées. In her first novel, She Came to Stay (1943), Beauvoir conveys the ideas of existentialism concerning the absurdity of the world and the incomprehensibility of man. In the novel The Blood of Others (1945) the individual personality is counterposed to society from the same viewpoints. However, Beauvoir leads her characters—members of the modern, individualistic intelligentsia—onto the path of social struggle within the ranks of the Resistance. Her novel The Mandarins (1954, Prix Goncourt) reflects more specifically the ideological and political life of postwar France, as well as the vacillations of part of the intelligentsia between bourgeois and communist ideas. She wrote the play The Useless Mouths (1945), the philosophical essay Pyrrhus and Cineas (1944), a book about the spiritual emancipation of women— The Second Sex (1949)—and the travel sketches America Day by Day (1948). In the second and third books of her autobiographical trilogy (the first was entitled Memories of a Dutiful Daughter, 1958), The Prime of Life (1960) and The Force of Circumstance (1963), Beauvoir, in describing her joint activity with J. P. Sartre and her doubts and searches, is essentially critically reexamining the ideas of existentialism.


Djamila Boupacha. Paris, 1962 (Written jointly with G. Halimi.)
La femme rompue. Paris, 1967.
In Russian translation:
Ochen’ legkaia smert’. [Moscow], 1968.
Prelestnye kartinki. [Moscow, 1968.]


Shkunaeva, I. D. Sovremennaia frantsuzskaia literatura. Moscow, 1961.
Evnina, E. M. Sovremennyi frantsuzskii roman. Moscow, 1962.
Gennari, G. Simone de Beauvoir. Paris [1959].
Jeanson, F. Simone de Beauvoir. Paris, [1966].
Julienne-Caffié, S. Simone de Beauvoir [Paris, 1966.] (Contains a bibliography.)
Gagnebin, L. Simone de Beauvoir ou le refus de l’indifférence. Paris, [1968].
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References in periodicals archive ?
In the novel, we see that traditions and taboos, which, as de Beauvoir states, are under the control of patriarchy, play an important role in the protagonist's mutilation.
Those lectures, attended by de Beauvoir, Merleau-Ponty, Raymond Aron, Georges Bataille, Jaqcques Lacan--in short by anybody who was anybody in the French intellectual elite--implanted in all of them a common language with which to shape their response to the postwar reality.
Simone de Beauvoir, along with her only slightly lesser attraction
This is why I shall limit myself to considering the contributions of Lou Andreas-Salome, Edith Stein and Simone de Beauvoir.
Felicity Joseph, on Philosophy Now magazine, mentions another interesting point: 'In The Second Sex, her most famous work, de Beauvoir sketches a kind of existential history of a woman's life: a story of how a woman's attitude towards her body and bodily functions changes over the years, and of how society influences this attitude.
Quienes saben de sus diferencias iniciales con el feminismo, expresadas en la Introduccion de El segundo sexo, que la llevan a establecer un lugar diferenciado de enunciacion respecto de ese, podrian inclinarse a afirmar que el proyecto global de Simone de Beauvoir no es feminista.
De tal modo, a partir de las obras Le deuxieme sexe (1949) de Beauvoir y L' ennemi principal de Delphy, por un lado, consideramos el legado beauvoiriano en la perspectiva del feminismo materialista que presenta esta ultima en el analisis del modo de produccion domestico y las "labores domesticas" como trabajo no remunerado.
En efecto, su educacion fue muy peculiar y su caracter la llevo a aplicar, en todos los momentos de su vida, los principios de libertad y autodeterminacion que habia propuesto De Beauvoir.
In awarding this distinction, the jury of the Simone de Beauvoir Prize for Women's Freedom "wishes to help galvanize international solidarity, reaffirm women's rights in the world, guarantee the protection of women who are today risking their lives for the struggle, and defend alongside them the ideals of equality and peace", The French Ambassador for Human Rights, Francois Zimeray represented the French Foreign Ministry on this occasion.
Simone de Beauvoir, en el despliegue de su proyecto de escritura, intentara lograr la supresion de los muros entre filosofia y literatura.
En el epigrafe de Une mort tres douce, Simone de Beauvoir cita, ademas de los mismos dos versos de Thomas que cita Barnes, un verso intermedio: "Old age should burn and rave at close of day;" y aparte lo cierra con punto y coma, y con un punto el primero, "Do not go gentle into that good night.
Aun reconociendo el interes de las aportaciones de Beauvoir y de Young, consideramos que el "estilo" femenino descrito por ambas no es el del cuerpo vivido merleau-pontiano, sino el de un cuerpo objetivado que vive su corporalidad tal y como le es impuesta desde fuera y que tiene que vencer constantemente las invasiones de su espacio corporal y de su tiempo [42].