Simone de Beauvoir

In the popular imagination, Simone de Beauvoir is best known as the foremother of contemporary feminism, and as the turbaned, chain-smoking, glamorously intellectual companion of Jean-Paul Sartre. Born in 1908, she rejected religion and conformity in her teens, and then turned to philosophy, becoming a professor in 1929. But after 20 years she realized what many women intellectuals have realized since — before she could really know what she thought, she had to examine what it was to "become a woman." She had to understand what had happened to her brilliant mind simply by virtue of its being housed in a...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!