Simone de Beauvoir’s 106th Birthday: Google Doodle celebrates French philosopher
The French writer, intellectual, political activist and feminist would have been 106
Thursday 09 January 2014
Google's latest Doodle marks the 106th birthday of French philosopher and writer Simone de Beauvoir, author of the novels She Came to Stay (1943) and Mandarins (1954) and the 1949 treatise The Second Sex.
The Doodle features a drawing of her set against the backdrop of a Parisian street scene - the city where she was born in 1908.
Beauvoir did not consider herself a philosopher, but her work influenced both feminist theory and existentialism - the 19th and 20th century philosophical movement that focused on the uniqueness and isolation of the individual experience in a seemingly meaningless universe.
Famous exponents include the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) and her countryman Jean Paul Sartre (1905-1980), with whom she began a relationship in 1929. The couple met while studying for the higher education agrégation in philosophy, a highly competitive postgraduate examination that ranks students. Sartre narrowly beat Beauvoir to first place.
Although they never married, it was the beginning of a lifelong relationship which saw them take other lovers - in Beauvoir's case both male and female. She once said that "Sex pleasure in woman is a kind of magic spell; it demands complete abandon; if words or movements oppose the magic of caresses, the spell is broken."
Beauvoir died of pneumonia in Paris in 1986, aged 78. She is buried next to Sartre at Montparnasse Cemetery.
Life & Style blogs
Men in tights: getting to the bottom of the latest trend
Snapchat removed the Best Friends list feature and 'stalkers' are upset
Night Nurse could put drivers over new drug limit
Stephen Hawking: NHS is Britain's finest public service and must be preserved from commercial interests
Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£6240 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a well established websit...
£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A skilled .NET developer with e...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company are cur...