Presentation on theme: "Albert Camus – An Absurd Hero Michel “It's better to bet on this life than on the next.”"— Presentation transcript:
Albert Camus – An Absurd Hero Michel “It's better to bet on this life than on the next.”
Albert Camus and Politics Spoke out against totalitarianism. Despite joining The French Communist Party in 1935, eventually rejected communism with his book “The Rebel” in 1951. He was a pacifist Fervently fought against capital punishment
During the 1950s he devoted himself mostly to Human Rights, primarily speaking against the Soviet Union’s treatment of its citizens. Left UNESCO after the UN accepted Spain and its leader Francisco Franco as a member because he refused to recognize a fascist country in the UN. Albert Camus and Politics
World War II Albert Camus was a well known resistance fighter. Directed the famous resistance journal “Combat” which railed against French cooperation with the Nazi occupiers. During the Liberation of Paris from occupation, he covered the fighting for eventual publication in “Combat”.
The Rebel A treaties on the motivation for revolution and rebellion. This work, more than others, servers the friendship between himself and several companions who sympathized with the communist ideals.
Reflections on the Guillotine An essay which outlines his reasoning for the complete rejection of capital punishment. Forms the basis for his belief that government does not have the right to plan and carry out murder, including war.
Neither Victims nor Executioners A series of articles written in the French Resistance paper Combat in which he details the role of murder and violence in the life of political beings.
The State of Siege A play about a town gripped in the rule of a leader who keeps them in line through fear.
The Tenets of Absurdism There is such a thing as meaning or value. If there is inherent meaning in the universe, humans cannot understand it. Individuals can create meaning in life themselves, but it is not essential.
The Tenets of Absurdism The pursuit of intrinsic or extrinsic meaning in the universe is not possible, but it may add meaning to the personal life There is a solution to the individual's desire to seek meaning, and it is the acknowledgement and embracing of absurdity.
Camus’ View of Absurdism Life is not useless or without purpose. The universe lacks logic. Meaning in life comes from a person’s ability to affect his/her own destiny. Human existence is defined by our relationships with each other, not an absurd and illogical universe.
Absurdism and Religion Religion and absurdism is a paradox. The absence of God in a person’s life can simultaneously be accompanied by a longing for “salvation and meaning that only God can provide”.
Absurdism and Religion Camus was influenced by the ideas of St. Augustine’s work Confessions, where Augustine promotes the idea of a connection between God and the rest of the world. Camus identified with the idea that a personal experience could become a reference point for his philosophical and literary writings.
Absurdism and Religion This gave birth to his practice of exploring absurdist philosophy by writing about individuals caught up in an absurd world.
An Important Decision The Absurd arises out of the fundamental disharmony between the individual’s search for meaning and the apparent meaninglessness of the universe.
An Important Decision Humans have three ways of resolving the dilemma: Suicide Religious belief in a transcendent reality, commonly called “the leap of faith”. Acceptance of the Absurd
Suicide (Escaping existence) Camus dismissed the viability of this option because death only adds to the absurdity of the Universe; it does not solve the riddle.
Religious belief Camus called this option “Philosophical Suicide” because it requires the individual to reject their personal ability to seek out meaning rationally.
Acceptance of the Absurd One must accept and even embrace the Absurd and continue to live in spite of it, Camus endorsed this option deciding that life can be given meaning through its struggle against the Absurd and meaninglessness.
Work Cited Camus, Albert. "Niether Victims nor Executioners." November 1946. Online Texts. 10 April 2010. —. "The Blood of Freedom." 24 August 1944. Online Texts. 10 April 2010. —. "The Myth of Sysiphus." 1942. Online Texts. 10 April 2010. —. "The Night of Truth." 24 August 1944. Online Texts. 10 April 2010. Camus, Catherine. SPIKE interviews Catherine Camus, daughter of Albert Camus Russell Wilkinson. October 1995. Crystal, Garry. Who is Albert Camus? - WiseGEEK. 24 April 2010. May, William F. "Albert Camus: Politcal Moralist." 24 November 1958. Religion Online Website. 24 April 2010. The European Graduate School. Albert Camus - Biography. 10 April 2010.
Further Readings Camus, Albert. The Plague. The Plague, The Fall, Exile and the Kingdom, and Selected Essays. New York: Everyman's Library, 2004. Camus, Albert. The Myth of Sisyphus. The Plague, The Fall, Exile and the Kingdom, and Selected Essays. New York: Everyman's Library, 2004.