Albert Camus

Albert Camus Picture

Albert Camus was born on November 7th, 1913 in Drean in French Algeria to a Pied-Noir family. His mother was of Spanish decent and his father was Lucien and a poor agricultural worker who died in the battle of Marne in World War I. Camus was brought up in poor living standard in Belcourt section of Algiers. He is a known French Noble Prize winning author, journalist, and philosopher. In 1923, he was accepted into the lycee and then admitted to the University of Algiers. In 1930, he was diagnosed to contracting tuberculosis which ended his football activities in the University as well as made him study part-time. In order to earn a living, Camus took several odd jobs that included; private tutor, car parts clerk, and an assistant at the Meteorological Institute. In 1935, he successfully completed is licence de philosophie BA and went on to complete his diploma d’etudes superieures which is equivalent to a MA with his thesis on Plotinus, Neo-Platonisme et Pensee Chretienne translated into English as Neo-Platonism and Christian Thought.

In 1935, Albert Camus had joined the French Communist Party as way to fight the Europeans for equality for the natives of Algeria. In 1936, he joined the Algerian Communist Party and then later joined the Algerian People’s Party. After being denounced as a Trotskyite in 1937 he was expelled from the party and went on to join the French anarchist movement. Camus went on to write for the anarchist publications such as Le Libertaire, La revolustion Proletarienne and Solidaridad Obrera.

He married to Simone Hie, a morphine addict in 1934; however the marriage ended quite soon. In 1935 Camus had founded Theatre du Travail, known as the Worker’s Theatre and later renamed it to Theatre de l’Equipe known as the Team’s Theatre around 1937. The theatre lasted until 1939. He began to write a socialist pape Alger-Republicain from 1937 to 1939. In the literary work he recounted the events of the peasants who lived in Kabylie in poor conditions, it is said that this paper had cost him his job. From 1939 to 1940 he wrote a similar paper that was brief and named Soir-Republicain. In 1945, Camus began to work for the magazine Paris-Soir. He finished his book both The Stranger and The Myth of Sisyphus, returning to Oran, Algeria in 1942 here became the editor of the newspaper Combatin. In 1949, Camus’s TB had returned and he began to live in seclusion for two years that followed. By 1951, Camus published The Rebel which was a philosophical analysis of rebellion and revolution which he expressed his rejection of communism.

Camus’s first main contribution to philosophy was his introduction to the “idea of the absurd”. He explained it to be a result of a person’s desire for clarity and meaning within a world and condition that offers neither. This was mainly discussed in his work The Myth of Sisyphus and also was seen in The Stranger and The Plague. By the 1950’s Camus devoted much of his time to human rights. However, he resigned from his work in UNESCO in 1952 when the UN had accepted Spain as a member in the union under the leadership of General Franco. In 1955 to 1956 he had began to write literary work for, L’Express. In 1957 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature for his writing against capital punishment in the essay “Relexions sur la Guillotine” translated as Reflections on the Guillotine. Camus died in a car accident near Sens in 1960.

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