The lost novel from the author of The Second Sex
When Andrée joins her school, Sylvie is immediately fascinated. Andrée is small for her age, but walks with the confidence of an adult. The girls become close. They talk for hours about equality, justice, war and religion; they lose respect for their teachers; they build a world of their own. But as the girls grow into young women, the pressures of society mount, threatening everything.
This novel was never published in Simone de Beauvoir's lifetime. It tells the story of the real-life friendship that shaped one of the most important thinkers and feminists of the twentieth century.
TRANSLATED BY LAUREN ELKIN - INTRODUCED BY DEBORAH LEVY
'Slim, elegant, achingly tragic and unaffectedly lovely in its evocation of the closeness between girls - and the pressures that sunder them' Spectator
'There were lines that absolutely punched me in the gut' Anbara Salam
'Gorgeously written, intelligent, passionate' Oprah Daily
'Elegantly translated...a rich and rewarding novella' Literary Review
This 'lost' novel by a giant of 20th-century letters reads surprisingly like a French Elena Ferrante... Lauren Elkin's translation is undistractingly smooth - Daily Telegraph
Translated by Lauren Elkin with exquisite finesse, it utterly conveys both de Beauvoir's heady sensuality and its immediate opposite, observant restraint... The Inseparables is a ravishing work of art - Financial Times
A succulent taster for those who don't know de Beauvoir's work and, for everyone else, a treat - Daily Mail
A poignant and sensitive portrait of female friendship which acutely captures the agonizing mysteries of intimacy. The translation was gorgeous, and there were lines that absolutely punched me in the gut -- Anbara Salam author of Belladonna
Slim, elegant, achingly tragic and unaffectedly lovely in its evocation of the closeness between girls - and the pressures that sunder them - Spectator
About the Author
Simone de Beauvoir was born in Paris in 1908. In 1929 she became the youngest person ever to obtain the agrégation in philosophy at the Sorbonne, placing second to Jean-Paul Sartre. She taught at the lycées at Marseille and Rouen from 1931-1937, and in Paris from 1938-1943. After the war, she emerged as one of the leaders of the existentialist movement, working with Sartre on Les Temps Mordernes. The author of several books including The Mandarins (1957) which was awarded the Prix Goncourt, de Beauvoir was one of the most influential thinkers of her generation. She died in 1986.
Lauren Elkin is the author of several books, including Flâneuse: Women Walk the City, a Radio 4 Book of the Week, a New York Times Notable Book of 2017, and a finalist for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel award for the art of the essay. Her essays on art, literature, and culture have appeared in the London Review of Books, the New York Times, Granta, Harper's, Le Monde, Les Inrockuptibles, and Frieze, among others. She is also an award-winning translator, most recently of Simone de Beauvoir's previously unpublished novel The Inseparables. After twenty years in Paris, she now lives in London.