Monday 17 November 2008
A la Simone de Beauvoir
Well, I never thought that my life will start resembling that of a feminist, philosopher and an assortment of different things - de Beauvoir. I first came across this name when I was doing my Literature in Womens Christian College. We were all naive and young and feminism and liberating ideas were quite novel and thereby fascinating to flirt with. For years calling myself a feminist was something which gave me a bloated ego where any form of chivalry was totally destroyed. My poor unassuming male friends were in a state of total confusion when I attempted on the travails of opening the door, volunteering to carry my bags, et al. So much for being a feminist and Simone de Beauvoir was always on my mind! Well, the plunging into the domain of higher studies cleared the notions of myself calling me a feminist and I ventured away from the portals of Feminism; Simone de beauvoir was still there. Now other things from her life started interesting me. Sartre came into the scene! Well, existentialism seemed to rule the order! That was the introduction of Simone de beauvoir and Sartre.
The Part II of the reflections continue way after the introduction of the two thinkers. The life led by the two caught my attention. The companionship of the two, a relation where the two were constantly there for the other and lived by the strong dictum of honesty and a right to explore people and experiences outside of them. The relationship that sustained the both of them throughout the rest of their life after thier meeting at Sorbonne. I quote from an online source, "They were famous as a couple with independent lives, who met in cafés, where they wrote their books and saw their friends at separate tables, and were free to enjoy other relationships, but who maintained a kind of soul marriage. Their liaison was part of the mystique of existentialism, and it was extensively documented and coolly defended in Beauvoir’s four volumes of memoirs, all of them extremely popular in France: “Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter” (1958), “The Prime of Life” (1960), “Force of Circumstance” (1963), and “All Said and Done” (1972). Beauvoir and Sartre had no interest in varnishing the facts out of respect for bourgeois notions of decency. Disrespect for bourgeois notions of decency was precisely the point."
Well, so much for Simone de beauvoir in my life. Now if the reader is speculating an assortment of things, I am encouraging him/her to do so for speculation is an art of assumption where the mind is free to think anything.