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1913-1960 Albert Camus. Freewrites: Quotations by Camus “At any street corner the feeling of absurdity can strike any man in the face.”

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Presentation on theme: "1913-1960 Albert Camus. Freewrites: Quotations by Camus “At any street corner the feeling of absurdity can strike any man in the face.”"— Presentation transcript:

1 Albert Camus

2 Freewrites: Quotations by Camus “At any street corner the feeling of absurdity can strike any man in the face.”

3 “The only real progress lies in learning to be wrong all alone.”

4 “To assert in any case that a man must be absolutely cut off from society because he is absolutely evil amounts to saying that society is absolutely good, and no-one in his right mind will believe this today.”

5 “You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.”

6 “A taste for truth at any cost is a passion which spares nothing.”

7

8 Background Born 1913 in French Algeria- poor during childhood Studied philosophy French Communist Party (1935)-desired more social equality Associated with French anarchist movement (1948)- workers’ uprising Wrote for a socialist paper

9 Background Continued Married twice but believed marriage was an unnatural institution  infidelity Against Germany/ the Nazis during WWII Opposed to US bombing Hiroshima The Stranger and The Myth of Sisyphus Rejected communism publicly Nobel Prize in literature for writings against capital punishment Died in 1960 at 46 in car accident

10 Absurdism Sartre- absurdity of individual experience Kierkegaard- absurdity of certain religious truths prevent us from reaching God rationally No human-comprehensible purpose for God, so faith in God is absurd in itself Camus rejected being labeled a “philosopher of the absurd” The Stranger- man living absurd life The Myth of Sisyphus- literary essay on Absurd

11 What is the Absurd? Begins with a paradox: happiness is fleeting, and the human condition is one of mortality We value our lives and existence, but we know that we will eventually die, so our endeavors/efforts are meaningless. How do you live, thinking life is of great importance, while at the same time knowing that life is meaningless due to inevitable death? If we accept that life has no meaning (therefore, no value), should we kill ourselves?

12 Absurdism: Final Notes Humans are subjects in an indifferent and absurd universe, but meaning can be created (unstably) by our own decisions and interpretations Can create beauty to make life worth living- provides something for which to strive  objective meaning Camus said absence of religious belief can coexist with a longing for “salvation and meaning” Conflict between the human tendency to seek inherent meaning in life and the human inability to find any such meaning Absurd= humanly impossible Live in a world without purpose


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