Simone de Beauvoir Revisited

Brosman, Catherine. Simone de Beauvoir Revisited. Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1991.


In this volume I review and evaluate Beauvoir’s literary, philosophical, and other works in the appropriate critical context by chronological, and generic groupings, against the background of her life and career, which I survey in the first chapter. I treat her fictional technique in detail, in accordance with her conviction that technique is a vehicle of meaning, and pay special attention to her philosophical concepts and positions, as expressed directly in essays and indirectly in fiction and drama, since the philosophical rationalizing of experience was long one of her principal concerns and even provided the framework for her political activism and feminism. Some 50 years after Beauvoir first elaborated her positions, they retain the vigor and perceptiveness that helped make French existentialism a major midcentury intellectual movement. I also consider Beauvoir’s production in the context of the French literary and intellectual tradition and midcentury writing in France.