Beauvoir and the Second Sex: Feminism, Race, and the Origins of Existentialism

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Rowman & Littlefield, 1999 - Philosophy - 263 pages
In a compelling chronicle of her search to understand Beauvoir's philosophy in The Second Sex, Margaret A. Simons offers a unique perspective on BeauvoirOs wide-ranging contribution to twentieth-century thought. She details the discovery of the origins of Beauvoir's existential philosophy in her handwritten diary from 1927; uncovers evidence of the sexist exclusion of Beauvoir from the philosophical canon; reveals evidence that the African-American writer Richard Wright provided Beauvoir with the theoretical model of oppression that she used in The Second Sex; shows the influence of The Second Sex in transforming Sartre's philosophy and in laying the theoretical foundations of radical feminism; and addresses feminist issues of racism, motherhood, and lesbian identity. Simons also draws on her experience as a WomenOs Liberation organizer as she witnessed how women used The Second Sex in defining the foundations of radical feminism. Bringing together her work as both activist and scholar, Simons offers a highly original contribution to the renaissance of Beauvoir scholarship.
 

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Contents

BEAUVOIR INTERVIEW 1979
1
RACISM AND FEMINISM A SCHISM IN THE SISTERHOOD 1979
23
BEAUVOIR AND SARTRE THE QUESTION OF INFLUENCE 1981
41
BEAUVOIR INTERVIEW 1982
55
THE SILENCING OF SIMONE DE BEAUVOIR GUESS WHATS MISSING FROM THE SECOND SEX 1983
61
MOTHERHOOD FEMINISM AND IDENTITY 1984
73
BEAUVOIR INTERVIEW 1985
93
SEXISM AND THE PHILOSOPHICAL CANON ON READING BEAUVOIRS THE SECOND SEX 1990
101
LESBIAN CONNECTIONS SIMONE DE BEAUVOIR AND FEMINISM 1991
115
THE SECOND SEX AND THE ROOTS OF RADICAL FEMINISM 1995
145
RICHARD WRIGHT SIMONE DE BEAUVOIR AND THE SECOND SEX 1997
167
BEAUVOIRS EARLY PHILOSOPHY THE 1927 DIARY 1998
185
REFERENCES
245
INDEX
255
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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About the author (1999)

The author of numerous articles on Beauvoir, feminism, and philosophy, Margaret A. Simons is co-editor (with Sylvie Le Bon de Beauvoir) of a forthcoming series of English translations of all Beauvoir's philosophically significant texts. She teaches in the Department of Philosophical Studies at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville.

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