Friday, May 14, 2010

Simone de Beauvoir: The Second Sex

I'm stuck with the thesis. Again... So, will make use of some week-old advice from Vale: "Beauvoir! Her Second Sex! Incredible! You've got to read it, Kris!" Well, I am...

"...Although she may feel the sexual urge as a personal need, since she seeks out the male when in heat, yet the sexual adventure is immediately experienced by her as an interior event and not as an outward relation to the world and to others.
But the fundamental difference between male and female mammals lies in this: the sperm, through which the life of the male is transcended in another, at the same instant becomes a stranger to him and separates from his body; so that the male recovers his individuality intact at the moment when he transcends it. The egg, on the contrary, begins to separate from the female body when, fully matured, it emerges from the follicle and falls into the oviduct but if fertilized by a gamete from outside, it becomes attached again through implantation in the uterus. First violated, the female then alienated - she becomes, in part, another than herself." (p. 54)

"To maintain is to deny the scattering of instants, it is to establish continuity in their flow; to create is to strike out from temporal unity in general in irreducible, separate present. And it is true also that in the female it is the continuity of life that seeks accomplishment in spite of separation; while separation into new and individualized forces is incited by male initiative." (p.57)

Will be interesting to learn about the re-positioning of woman in the mid 20th century.

1 comment:

Artashes said...

And now back to the thesis!! :)