Simone de Beauvoir

French philosopher, social theorist and activist (1908–1986)

Simone Lucie Ernestine Marie Bertrand de Beauvoir (UK: /də ˈbvwɑːr/, US: /də bˈvwɑːr/;[1][2] French: [simɔn də bovwaʁ] (audio speaker iconlisten); 9 January 1908 – 14 April 1986) was a French author (writer) and philosopher (person who writes about ways of thinking).

Simone de Beauvoir (1967)

She wrote novels (stories in a book), articles about philosophy ways of thinking or ways of living, and politics, biographies (books about other people's lives) and an autobiography (a book about her life).

Her best known books are She Came to Stay and The Mandarins. Her best known writing about ideas is The Second Sex, which was written in 1949. It describes the bad experiences of women in European society, and suggests how women's lives can be improved.

Early years


Her full name was Simone Lucie-Ernestine-Marie-Bertrand de Beauvoir. She was born on January 9, 1908 in Paris. She studied mathematics and ways of thinking at the Institut Catholique. Then she studied literature and languages at the Institut Sainte-Marie. As well, she studied ways of thinking at the Sorbonne, which is at the University of Paris.

Her writing; personal life


In 1943, de Beauvoir published She Came to Stay, a story about her lover Jean-Paul Sartre (who was also a writer and a philosopher). Next, she wrote a novel called The Mandarins, which won prize.

In 1944 de Beauvoir wrote an article called Pyrrhus et Cinéas, which was about a way of thinking about hard choices that people have to make.

In 1949, she wrote Le deuxième sexe. It was translated by Howard Parshley to The Second Sex. It describes the bad experiences of women in European society, and suggests how women's lives can be improved. The book also discussed ways of thinking about hard choices.

At the end of World War II, de Beauvoir and Sartre started a newspaper about ways of living called Les Temps Modernes.

De Beauvoir was bisexual and had sexual relationships with some of her female students.[3]

She died of pneumonia. She is buried next to Sartre at the Cimetière du Montparnasse in Paris.

Some of the books she wrote


Books about Simone de Beauvoir

  • Beauvoir, Simone de. Woman: Myth & Reality,
    • in Jacobus, Lee A (ed.) A World of Ideas. Bedford/St. Martins, Boston 2006. 780-795


  1. Wells, John C. (2008). Longman Pronunciation Dictionary (3rd ed.). Longman. ISBN 978-1-4058-8118-0.
  2. Jones, Daniel (2011). Roach, Peter; Setter, Jane; Esling, John (eds.). Cambridge English Pronouncing Dictionary (18th ed.). Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-15255-6.
  3. Academic tug-of-love over de Beauvoir legacy

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