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Il secondo sesso (1949)

di Simone de Beauvoir

Altri autori: H. M. Parshley (Traduttore)

Altri autori: Vedi la sezione altri autori.

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4,171292,365 (3.94)57
Newly translated and unabridged in English for the first time, Simone de Beauvoir's masterwork is a powerful analysis of the Western notion of "woman," and a groundbreaking exploration of inequality and otherness. This long-awaited new edition reinstates significant portions of the original French text that were cut in the first English translation. Vital and groundbreaking, Beauvoir's pioneering and impressive text remains as pertinent today as it was sixty years ago, and will continue to provoke and inspire generations of men and women to come.… (altro)
Aggiunto di recente dabiblioteca privata, alexandria2021, ejmw, marg_dore, pythonesque, Laura_J_D
Biblioteche di personaggi celebriNelson Algren, JeffBuckley, Ralph Ellison, Edward Estlin Cummings
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» Vedi le 57 citazioni

I was drawn to this book by a single sentence: One day I wanted to explain myself to myself... And it struck me with a sort of surprise that the first thing I had to say was 'I am a woman.' De Beauvoir presents the idea that women have been set up over the centuries as the ultimate "Other". Otherness is the idea that people need to define something or someone as not the self to be able to define the self. On an individual level, everyone outside your own head is Other, but, De Beauvoir claims, the ideal of femininity has been set up as a societal Other.

De Beauvoir claims that society defines normal as masculine. That was certainly true when she wrote this book in the 1940's, and I think it is largely true today. Strength, power, rationality are all defined by society as masculine and good, while weakness, emotion, and intuition are defined as feminine and bad. I was uncomfortable at first with labeling the first set of attributes masculine and the second feminine, but I realized that De Beauvoir is considering societal archetypes that (annoyingly) still hold. It is still considered odd for a woman to desire power or a man to be emotional.

The book discusses how these ideals are embedded in society. De Beauvoir's fundamental argument is that traits such as rationality can and should be shared by all humans, but the structure of society has withheld them from women. I agree with her general argument, but I sometimes was annoyed with De Beauvoir's presentation. Her justification consists mostly of examples strung together to paint the worst picture of femininity. The examples are too specific to be generally convincing. She seems to largely draw her case from psychological literature that discusses particularly neurotic women; it is relatively rare that she discusses the case of the average woman.

De Beauvoir also seems to hate women and idealize the world of men. She wants women to acquire masculine traits and lose feminine traits. She seems to imply men have the perfect life. For example, she discusses the limitations of the home in providing a fulfilling career for women and makes the assumption that most men are fulfilled by their jobs. In general, she writes as if men have no problems. Yet I am sure there are enough cases in the psychological literature that a book can be written that makes just as sorry a case for the sad plight of men as De Beauvoir makes for women.

Going off topic a bit, I am always annoyed at those strains of feminism that assume the feminine is less valuable than the masculine. We have gotten to a point where it is generally acceptable for a woman to have so called masculine traits, but it is still unacceptable for men to have feminine traits. Focusing on the feminine plight was a logical place to start; the masculine traits are the ones associated with the power to repress and abuse others, and women needed to escape from that. However, the problems facing women now, from home/work balancing to wanting to wear skirts and still be taken seriously, are largely related to balancing of feminine and masculine. Men and women need to come to respect feminine qualities and recognize them in everyone. In short, all of these masculine and feminine qualities about need to lose their gender and be recognized as human.
  eri_kars | Jul 10, 2022 |
If you are a woman, love a woman, know a woman, or just happen to think that over half the population of the planet might be worth learning about, you should read this book.

Doubtless, you won't agree with everything she says (I'd be surprised if you did, she has some controversial social and philosophical beliefs); however, it is a thorough examination of the physical, psychological, historical, and social development of women and "femininity." While some of it is quite dated (sadly, not as much as I'd like), it is still quite relevant.

Ultimately, reading this gives you both a historical perspective of how far we've come and inspires insightful thought on what we still need to do. I agree wholeheartedly with the anonymous commentator who scribbled in pencil on the copyright page of this library book: "Beauvior compels us, as women, to delve further than the surface of simple womankind." ( )
  Zoes_Human | Apr 23, 2022 |

Well, presenting my review of The Second Sex:




Update: Who isn't barracking for Assange? I doubt the idea that the US or any other government, including the Swedish government which is apparently a covert member of NATO, with US intelligence sharing being kept from parliament, is behind the allegations in Sweden.

But it is a case of the ideals of protecting women from violence being well and truly exploited, as far as I can tell. A couple of girls trying it on. Does anybody have information to stand against the details given here: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1336291/Wikileaks-Julian-Assanges-2-nigh...

This is from crikey.com.au:

Anna Ardin, one of the two complainants in the rape and sexual assault case against WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange, has left Sweden, and may have ceased actively co-operating with the Swedish prosecution service and her own lawyer, sources in Sweden told Crikey today.

The move comes amid a growing campaign by leading Western feminists to question the investigation, and renewed confusion as to whether Sweden has actually issued charges against Assange. Naomi Klein, Naomi Wolf, and the European group Women Against Rape, have all made statements questioning the nature and purpose of the prosecution.


Count me in with anybody who thinks that women should not be behaving like this. They ought to be ashamed of themselves.

By the way, Russia is suggesting Assange for Nobel Peace Prize. Why not? Obama got one...Assange has actually done something. Big somethings!



Update: We live in a society that thinks it can keep kicking men in the guts all the time. It's awful. In another thread here on goodreads the idea of 'Mom's job' has come up like this is the thing in the world that is taken for granted, long suffering mum. Fuck me dead, I mean really. What a crock. Have you all forgotten all the men who go through life uncomplainingly fixing and banging and hammering and being completely taken for granted that they are there to do shit for women and children who can't do it. And it isn't even respected. There will be deprecatory comments about the shed. There will be rolling eyes and sighs if he DOESN'T hop to it and fix whatever it is he is supposed to.

I've been travelling a lot lately and one of the things I've noticed is how utterly chivilrous men still are even though you'd think they'd had it well and truly stomped out of them as something sexist. Any time I've carrying my bag around a train station a guy will simply help me with it without asking, without making a fuss, without thinking he should be acknowledged in some way.

Feminism is sexist and I'm sick of it.
( )
  bringbackbooks | Jun 16, 2020 |
In The Second Sex Simone de Beauvoir attempts to define the mystery that is a woman, and she does an incredible job of that. Beauvoir goes over the history of women in the ideas that they represent and how they are represented in society. We are shown in various forms the dichotomy that woman seems to represent. A woman can be either Eve or the Virgin Mary, and for that, she is alternately repulsed and glorified. We put her on a pedestal while enslaving her to our whims at the same time. She can be a representation of life itself or of death. Some writers remember that she is made of flesh and call it disgusting that she has the necessities that it entails. In that sense, it was uncomfortable reading. On the other hand, it was really fascinating and engrossing.

The book is slightly outdated in the sense that it was written in 1949 and translated into English in 1953. So it missed the Feminist Revolution of the 1970s. However, Beauvoir lived to the ripe time of 1986 and in that she might have had some opinions on it. Also, I have heard that the translation that I have obtained is not that good, but that did not detract from my enjoyment of the book. It is easy enough to understand her position and thesis without a completely faithful translation. Although it would be interesting to read it in the original French, it would probably take really long since I would have to know French. ( )
  Floyd3345 | Jun 15, 2019 |
Ao longo de quase 70 anos, muitas teorias propostas neste livro tornaram-se verificadas, ou então foram completamente desacreditadas. Para o leitor e a leitora do século XXI, o livro não é mais do que uma mistura de senso comum e dados enganosos. O texto, entretanto, continua exortando-nos a nos rebelarmos contra,... bem, contra os homens.
O feminismo até a primeira metade do século XX não tinha condições para ampliar o seu espectro de reivindicações e de se espalhar pela população. É fácil de perceber o porquê: nas duas guerras mundiais foram os homens que tiveram o “privilégio” de ir morrer em massa nos conflitos. Apenas depois da II Guerra Mundial e de se ter espalhado a ideia de uma paz perpétua foi possível a Beauvoir reivindicar para as mulheres os mesmos direitos que os homens tinham.
Esse feminismo do pós-guerra (ou segunda onda do feminismo, como por vezes é chamado) já não tem apenas uma certa dose de contradição embutida, o que é quase inevitável em qualquer proposta real, mas é essencialmente uma fraude. É até incompreensível que tão pouca gente tenha se dado conta de que a suposta libertação das mulheres era na realidade uma escravidão de fato, onde havia uma pequena dose de liberdade para alguns caprichos. Primeiro, o direito de as mulheres trabalharem em todo tipo de postos era, como é óbvio, o fim de um privilégio, mesmo que isto possa ser sentido com incômodo. Em segundo lugar, a mulher , uma vez liberada da “escravidão da natureza”, já não estava mais obrigada a ser mãe e poderia pois ser “o que ela quisesse”. Mas isto era feito com o auxílio da ciência, o que criava uma situação peculiar e que ainda hoje pouca gente quer perceber.
O feminismo parecia ser uma coisa em extinção no início dos anos 90. Por um lado, a parte mais folclórica do feminismo – mulheres queimando soutiens e não fazendo depilação – era ridicularizada. Por outro lado, o modo de vida moderno, anti-família e cheio de ‘stress’, tornava-se cada vez mais desconfortável. Havia uma certa vontade de “voltar atrás” e foram tempos em que o papa João Paulo II teve algum impacto sobre a sociedade ao apelar por um modo de vida mais “conservador”.
Contudo, a causa feminista tinha um potencial revolucionário enorme e não foi descartada facilmente.
A clássica “luta de classes” marxista cria uma certa fratura social, que na verdade já existe em alguma medida, mas tem um alcance limitado, porque estas classes já vivem mesmo largamente separadas. Mas o feminismo à Beauvoir divide literalmente a humanidade ao meio e coloca uma parte contra a outra. O feminismo foi renovado e tornado mais radical. C omo foi possível renovar um movimento que tinha caído num descrédito tão grande? Aconteceu porque novas gerações entram em ação na sociedade e, por regra, ignoram quase tudo o que veio antes delas. Desta forma, estas gerações são facilmente manipuladas pelos velhos revolucionários, que supostamente compreendem como funcionam as transformações sociais.
Com a inserção da mulher no trabalho, o que por si só não era um problema, tornou-se possível cobrar impostos de toda a população, e não apenas de metade dela. Eis um trecho de entrevista com Simone, feita pela feminista Betty Friedan, na revista The Satuday Review. Betty levanta a possibilidade de remunerar as mulheres do lar, especialmente as que nele estão cuidando dos filhos, e Simone arremata: “Não, não acredito que mulher alguma deva ter essa opção. Mulher alguma deveria ser autorizada a ficar em casa e cuidar dos seus filhos. A sociedade deveria ser totalmente diferente. As mulheres não deveriam ter essa opção precisamente porque se essa opção existir, demasiadas mulheres irão escolhê-la. Isto é uma forma de forçar as mulheres rumo a uma direção.” O autoritarismo e a doentia desonestidade de Simone, máscaras que recobrem toda a sua obra e cujos objetivos só o séquito de idiotas úteis não entende, não são despropositados: dentro da síntese por ela defendida estavam a destruição da família e dos valores que solidificaram a civilização ocidental. Entre outras coisas, Simone de Beauvoir assinou uma petição exigindo a legalização da pedofilia e um abaixo-assinado para libertação de três indivíduos que haviam abusado sexualmente de crianças. ( )
  jgcorrea | Oct 17, 2017 |
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Nome dell'autoreRuoloTipo di autoreOpera?Stato
Beauvoir, Simone deautore primariotutte le edizioniconfermato
Parshley, H. M.Traduttoreautore secondariotutte le edizioniconfermato
Borde, ConstanceTraduttoreautore secondarioalcune edizioniconfermato
Crosland, MargaretIntroduzioneautore secondarioalcune edizioniconfermato
Malovany-Chevallier, SheilaTraduttoreautore secondarioalcune edizioniconfermato
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This is the abridged English translation by H. M. Parshley, which omits parts of the original work. Do not combine it with the complete and unabridged English translation, first published in 2010, or with complete versions in other languages.
(If your copy of the book is *not* the Parshley edition, but is mixed up in this one, please modify the title or ISBN of your catalog record, so that your edition can be found and properly separated.)
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Newly translated and unabridged in English for the first time, Simone de Beauvoir's masterwork is a powerful analysis of the Western notion of "woman," and a groundbreaking exploration of inequality and otherness. This long-awaited new edition reinstates significant portions of the original French text that were cut in the first English translation. Vital and groundbreaking, Beauvoir's pioneering and impressive text remains as pertinent today as it was sixty years ago, and will continue to provoke and inspire generations of men and women to come.

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