Read de Beauvoir, don’t put it down ..

… ends today’s essay by Barbara Vinken in the taz, and I guess she makes a still actual point here.
‘faces’ of Beauvoir from
Not only is it good to recapitulate how women had to fight (like for these nowadays ‘common’ rights like voting, access to universities, .. etc) … but also to learn which brilliant heads like Simone de Beauvoir helped to create the path we came along – and not to forget to reconsider all the still existing (trap) holes along the way, which women still have a tendency to hit.
On the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Simone de Beauvoir, literary scholar Barbara Vinken rereads her book, ‘The Second Sex’: “De Beauvoir remains a great analyst of passion, often read against the grain of her own philosophy. And she was an incorruptible observer of women, of the fears that a woman’s success makes her less feminine while a man’s success only confirms his masculinity; of the hypocrisies resulting when women are held to a marriage, and the often childish attempts at compensation and legitimization that result from it; of the inner conflict between career and femininity. Especially given that today’s young women often feel emancipated ? the question arises as to the source of their optimism ? one must say the same about ‘The Second Sex’ as Diderot said about Richardson’s bestseller ‘Clarissa’: Read de Beauvoir, don’t put it down.” (link)

.. so here to go to …. the entire article in german … Ausgang aus der Unmündigkeit

… Beauvoir bleibt, oft gegen den Strich ihrer Philosophie gelesen, eine große Analytikerin der Leidenschaft. Und eine unbestechliche Beobachterin von Frauen, den Ängsten, durch Erfolg weniger Frau zu sein, während der Erfolg des Mannes seine Männlichkeit nur bestätige; den Heucheleien, wenn Frauen in der Ehe ausgehalten werden, und den daraus resultierenden oft kindischen Kompensations- und Legitimationsversuchen; der Zerrissenheit zwischen Beruf und Weiblichkeit. Gerade weil junge Frauen sich heute oftmals gleichberechtigt fühlen – man fragt sich, woher viele diesen Optimismus nehmen -, muss man über “Das andere Geschlecht” sagen, was Diderot über Richardsons Bestseller “Clarissa” gesagt hat: Lesen Sie Beauvoir, lesen Sie sie ohne Unterlass.

.. or pick one of the many other links in the recent news to explore her actuality:
Still the second sex? Simone de Beauvoir centenary (The Independent)
Source of inspiration (comment on Guardian Unlimited)
Academic tug-of-love over De Beauvoir legacy (Guardian Unlimited)
signandsight on the french discovery of de Beauvoir as a late ‘cover girl’

Print Friendly, PDF & Email