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It's obvious to me that it would be best to read it in French. I can read cereal box French as well as any other Canadian, but I'm in no way ready to read philosophy in French. ;-)
Has anyone read the book in both languages? Is the English translation a waste of time?
Sadly, je ne sais pas any French words other than those I just typed (ok, maybe I know a couple more), so I'm no help. I'm really interested in hearing the answer, tho.
She has issues with the earlier translation as well, but on the whole it seems preferable. I wouldn't write the English translation off as a waste of time, but yes, ideally you should read it in French. At the moment I'm reading Moi's book Sex, Gender and the Body, where she presents an in-depth analysis of de Beauvoir's theory that 'one is not born but becomes a woman' as well as the use of the terms 'sex' and 'gender' (a distinction that doesn't exist in French). She also covers some of the translation problems relevant to her discussion - for example the use of a term for female animals (which is used as a derogatory term for women) and for which no suitable English translation exists.
I'll still be reading The Second Sex, if anyone is interested in reading and discussing what is considered to be a much better translation . . . and is still a feminist classic . . . and so far still seems very relevant today, despite being written in 1949.
Those interested in learning more about the new translation (and why you might want to read it) might start here:
My book is a French edition so we could compare notes. Perhaps I could catch up after I come back.
If anyone else is interested, shall we make a date to start reading May 1st? That gives us all time to clear the decks with other ongoing reading material and to get the right edition. It sounds like the latest 2011 translation is the best one to work from. (I'm pretty sure my edition predates that but I'll have to take a look once I'm back home next week.)
Re. the discussion, if people have suggestions on how best to approach the book, they are very welcome.
jennybhatt, should we start a whole new thread for the 2016 read? or just keep tacking on to this one?
So, two questions for all who will be joining the group read in May:
1) We could keep this as the main general thread and post links to the individual section reading threads as they are created. Would that work?
2) And, if we all agree to reading by section, we might want to allow a time gap between each section thread going up? Would a 2-week gap between each section work?