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Hughes, Edward J.

The Cambridge Companion to Camus


Albert Camus is one of the iconic figures of twentieth-century French literature, one of France´s most widely read modern literary authors and one of the youngest winners of the Nobel Prize for Literature. As the author of "L´Etranger" and the architect of the notion of ´the Absurd´ in the 1940s, he shot to prominence in France and beyond. His work nevertheless attracted hostility as well as acclaim and he was increasingly drawn into bitter political controversies, especially the issue of France´s place and role in the country of his birth, Algeria. Most recently, postcolonial studies have identified in his writings a set of preoccupations ripe for revisitation. Situating Camus in his cultural and historical context, this Companion explores his best-selling novels, his ambiguous engagement with philosophy, his theatre, his increasingly high-profile work as a journalist and his reflection on ethical and political questions that continue to concern readers today.

Chronology; Introduction Edward J. Hughes;
Part I. Biography and Influences:
1. Camus: a life lived in critical times Ieme van der Poel;
2. Situating Camus: the formative influences Toby Garfitt;
3. Autobiographical soundings in L´Envers et l´Endroit Edward J. Hughes;
Part II. Themes, Preoccupations and Genres:
4. Rethinking the absurd: Le Mythe de Sisyphe David Carroll;
5. Camus and the theatre Christine Margerrison;
6. Camus the journalist Jeanyves Guerin;
7. Camus and social justice Martin Crowley;
8. Violence and ethics in Camus Colin Davis;
9. Camus and Sartre: the great quarrel Charles Forsdick;
10. Portraits of women, visions of Algeria Danielle Marx-Scouras;
Part III. Texts and Contexts:
11. From Noces to L´Etranger Peter Dunwoodie;
12. Layers of meaning in La Peste Margaret E. Gray;
13. Withheld identity in La Chute David Ellison;
14. Le Premier Homme and the literature of loss Debra Kelly;
Postface Edward J. Hughes;
Guide to further reading;

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