November 5th, 2009

When De Gaulle and Simone de Beauvoir agreed …


Simone de Beauvoir, modernité et engagement,

Simone de Beauvoir, modern and committed

Claudine Monteil, Ed L’Harmattan ISBN 978-2-296-10025-1

General de Gaulle and Beauvoir finally agreed on one point; the access to contraception for young women of my generation, and therefore to the pill at a time when women had to wait to be 21 years old. Beauvoir got very involved in this struggle of the French Movement for Family Planning founded in 1960. As a pioneer she supported the action of the Doctor Marie-Andrée Lagroua-Weil-Hallé.

Thanks to Beauvoir and to these women, we were the first generation of women to have access to the pill, which gave us the opportunity to put into practice our slogan, “Our bodies belongs to us.”

Beauvoir had mentioned to me the support of a well-known man in France, Doctor Lucien Neuwirth. At the time, Neuwirth was one of the most renowned French resistance activist with De Gaulle under World War II.

Neuwirth went to talk to De Gaulle, then president of France, to apply for free permission of the pill. It was quite a tricky moment for this renowned resistance worker and you will find all the details about it in my book.


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