Beauvoir studies in Brazil
By Bruna Mello and Beatriz Chaves
The first meeting of our study group on Beauvoir, which we called “Beauvoir & seus diálogos” [Beauvoir & her dialogues], happened by video conference on 4th August, 2021. We met more than 25 people from a total of 70 inscriptions, from all over Brazil, who shared the same interest in reading Beauvoir with us. As researchers on Beauvoir’s thought in Brazil, we wanted to create this study group for many reasons.
The title of our first meeting was “Beauvoir far beyond The Second Sex” because, firstly, to those in the group who might be familiar only with The Second Sex, we wanted to show the diversity and amount of writings she produced during her lifetime, offering an opportunity to read and to discuss them with us. Secondly, because we knew that some of the people who have joined us would somehow need the same help we needed when we started the lonely process of studying Beauvoir during our undergraduate degree in Philosophy at Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP) and at Universidade de São Paulo (USP).
Although we have good translations of many of Beauvoir’s writings in Brazil, it is not easy to find most of the papers and books on Beauvoir translated to portuguese. Besides, those of us who want to fight for the recognition of women philosophers deal with the difficulty not only about finding studies in portuguese but, especially, about finding a professor who is able to advise us. In Philosophy, such as in other areas, the canon is mostly composed by white european men. One or another woman sometimes shows up during our undergraduate and graduate courses, and almost always because of our female professors. But as this process of recognition of women philosophers is still happening, for those who want to do research on Beauvoir, such as on other female thinkers, that same support offered for the ones who research canonical philosophers is still not available.
At least in Philosophy Departments here, Feminist Studies still fight for space and recognition because women’s contribuition commonly hasn’t been taken as a concern to Philosophy. Thus, our study group has as its main objective to make the study of Beauvoir’s work something not so lonely, creating a support network and encouragement of Beauvoir studies in Philosophy as such as in other fields in Brazil.
In addition to the monthly meetings, we will organize events aimed at discussing specific themes within Beauvoir studies. We intend to invite Brazilian researchers who have published about Beauvoir in order to contribute to the advancement of debates in our country. If possible, we would also like to invite Beauvoir scholars from abroad to help us promote such researches among us.
Bruna Mello Gomes Bernardes is a masters student at Instituto de Filosofia e Ciências Humanas in Unicamp, Brazil, who is particularly interested in the influence of dialectical-historical materialism on Simone de Beauvoir’s thought.
Beatriz Chaves Dias is a masters student at Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas in Usp, Brazil, who is particularly interested in Beauvoir’s early writings and in her role as one of the most important minds of French existentialism.
To cite this article: Bruna Mello and Beatriz Chaves, “Beauvoir studies in Brazil”, Chère Simone de Beauvoir, August 2021, URL: https://lirecrire.hypotheses.org/3577
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