A Philosopher Manqué?: Simone de Beauvoir, Moral Value and ‘The Useless Mouths’

European Journal of Women's Studies 8 (2):201-220 (2001)
  Copy   BIBTEX


In discussing Simone de Beauvoir’s ontological ethics in an earlier article in this journal, the author suggested in passing that she could be seen as a ‘philosopher manqué’, a ‘lost’ or ‘missed’ philosopher, a woman who gave up or rejected philosophy to pursue ideas by better means for her purposes. Here the author explores the idea of de Beauvoir as a philosopher manqué in relation to her play Les Bouches inutiles, using a translation-in-progress into English, The Useless Mouths, to examine ideas about morality, ethics and intersubjectivity expressed within it. De Beauvoir constructs characters around different philosophical positions, which are evaluated by reference to the play’s unfolding action. This turns on men’s hidden evaluation of the category of women as, by definition, ‘the useless mouths’ of society, an evaluation revealed by strategies for survival in the in extremis situation of a town under siege.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 77,737

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Philosophical Writings.Simone de Beauvoir & Margaret A. Simons (eds.) - 2004 - University of Illinois Press.
The Cambridge Companion to Simone de Beauvoir.Claudia Card (ed.) - 2003 - Cambridge University Press.


Added to PP

1 (#1,512,693)

6 months
1 (#482,368)

Historical graph of downloads

Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.
How can I increase my downloads?