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Camus & Existential Views

1. "Our aim," declares Camus, in a rejection of other views of the problem, "is to shed light upon the step taken by the mind when, starting from a philosophy of the world's lack of meaning, it ends up by finding a meaning and depth in it." Sartre, according to Camus, is too much in love with the philosophical conceit of negating everything from morality to reality to seriously engage depth of meaning. Kierkegaard is too ready to rely on the role of the divine to allow close questioning of the feud between futility and faith. Hegel's ethical, reasonable man is simply uncongenial to Camus. On the other hand, let us explore the validity of Camus's notion of the modernist hero (the absurd man), expressed in The Myth of Sisyphus and The Stranger, and again in Gide's The Immoralist, Musil's The Man Without Qualities, and Malraux's The Conquerors. It is really little different from an adumbration of the heroes of classical tragedy or Romantic fiction. Do you agree or disagree? What are the differences between the heroes of Romanticism or Classicism and those of Modernism?

2. Camus provides an atheistic, or as he might have it, a nontheistic, alternative to Kierkegaard's expression of Christian angst on one hand, and inflects the aggressive atheism of Sartre on the other. Yet in The Stranger, Camus creates an antihero whose sense of himself is more congenial to Sartre's Being and Nothingness than to his own ideation of Sisyphus. Does that mean Camus is an honest philosophical commentator and a dishonest novelist, that one work is a commentary on the other, or that Camus provides different perspectives of one world view? Reconcile the apparent paradox.

3. Events overtake and drive character in the literature in this study, and events create a platform for the experience of anxiety and occasional, though rare, insight. For example, Vladimir and Estragon never break out of their "waiting" mode. Proust's Marcel experiences life moment to...

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Camus & Existential Views. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 14:41, March 18, 2019, from