Philosophy in the Contemporary World

Volume 6, Issue 3/4, Fall/Winter 1999

William C. Pamerleau
Pages 79-83

Making a Meaningful Life
Rereading Beauvoir

In this paper. I will explain the key elements of freedom in Beauvoir’s work, and I will show that they acknowledge a process of development and the effects of socialization. This account of freedom, I will argue, makes her view more attractive than the views of other existentialists, which many find to be too rooted in a subject-centered philosophy. However, to make Beauvoir’s views on freedom more consistent with contemporary philosophy, I suggest we read them as offering us a goal to achieve and not a capacity that we have inherently.