Friday, May 28, 2010

Simone de Beauvoir: A New Translation and A Look Back

Simone de Beauvoir, MEMOIRS OF A DUTIFUL DAUGHTERKnopf has published a new translation of Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex. It's the first new translation in almost sixty years—and it includes materials previously edited out of the original translation. The Second Sex is a bit of a rusty classic. Women's lives—at least in the developed world—have changed dramatically.

However, Simone de Beauvoir is still as fascinating as ever. She chronicled her early life in Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter—an intimate picture of growing up in a bourgeois French family, rebelling as an adolescent against the conventional expectations of her class, and striking out on her own with an intellectual and existential ambition exceedingly rare in a young woman in the 1920s.

And, of course, Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Satre were one of the world's legendary couples. Hazel Rowley does this passionate, freethinking pair justice in Tête-à-Tête: Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Satre. The New York Times Book Review said, "Engrossing... Tells Beauvoir and Sartre’s repellent, inspiring and unlikely tale more completely and concisely than it has ever been told."

1 comment:

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