The Second Sex | Study Guide

Simone de Beauvoir

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The Second Sex | Key Figures

Key Figure Description
Frederick Engels Frederick Engels was a German Socialist philosopher, and Karl Marx's closest associate. Read More
Martin Heidegger Martin Heidegger was a German philosopher known for his groundbreaking work in existentialism—a profound influence on 20th-century art and letters. Read More
Maurice Merleau-Ponty A French phenomenological philosopher and classmate of Beauvoir's, Maurice Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception deeply influenced her approach to knowledge and to organization in The Second Sex. Read More
Jean-Paul Sartre Jean-Paul Sartre was a French philosopher, novelist, playwright, and proponent of existentialism. Read More
Claude Lévi-Strauss Claude Lévi-Strauss was a French anthropologist and intellectual, and a classmate of Beauvoir's. Read More
André Breton André Breton was a French poet, essayist, and critic. He is considered the father of surrealism—a mode of making art in which the lines between dream and reality are obscured
Paul Claudel Paul Claudel was a French poet, playwright, and novelist. He is best known for his symbolist plays and lyric poetry.
Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette was a successful French novelist whose deeply and convincingly sensual work focused on women and love. She is quoted often in The Second Sex.
Jules Laforgue Jules Laforgue was a French Symbolist poet whose linguistic inventions deeply influenced the modernist poets of the 20th century.
D.H. Lawrence D.H. Lawrence was a prolific English author of novels, short stories, and poems.
Henry de Montherlant Henry de Montherlant was French a novelist and playwright. His sardonic and misogynist novels enjoyed some popular attention in his day.
Wilhelm Stekel Stekel was an Austrian physician and psychoanalyst. He was one of Sigmund Freud's students, but he broke relations with Freud in 1912.
Stendhal (Marie-Henri Beyle) Stendhal was a French writer, known for his works of fiction. His most celebrated novels are Le Rouge et le noir (The Red and the Black), and La Chartreuse de Parma (The Charterhouse of Parma).
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