The Second Sex is a nonfiction philosophical work by French existentialist Simone de Beauvoir that was first published 1949. It is one of the earliest attempts to confront human history from a feminist perspective. It won de Beauvoir many admirers and just as many detractors. Today, many regard this massive and meticulously researched masterwork as not only as pillar of feminist thought but of 20th-century philosophy in general. The Second Sex is also considered an inspiration behind second-wave feminism.