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The myth of Sisyphus and other essays by…
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The myth of Sisyphus and other essays (original 1942; edition 1991)

by Albert Camus

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4,941301,360 (3.98)65
Member:Librarianlacey
Title:The myth of Sisyphus and other essays
Authors:Albert Camus
Info:New York : Vintage Books, 1991.
Collections:Your library
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The Myth of Sisyphus: And Other Essays by Albert Camus (1942)

  1. 20
    The Fall by Albert Camus (WilfGehlen)
    WilfGehlen: The Fall brings to mind The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, by Coleridge--tales that attempt to imbue the innocent with the wisdom of experience.
  2. 22
    Moby Dick by Herman Melville (WilfGehlen)
    WilfGehlen: Camus was greatly influenced by Melville and in The Myth of Sisyphus mentions Moby-Dick as a truly absurd work. Reading Moby-Dick with Camus' absurd in mind gives a deeper, and very different insight than provided by the usual emphasis on Ahab's quest for revenge.… (more)
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  iSatyajeet | Nov 21, 2018 |




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  iSatyajeet | Nov 21, 2018 |
There are some interesting ideas here, but if you've read a lot of philosophy it just comes off a little passe. I guess that's a danger of being a ground breaker. ( )
  ZephyrusW | May 4, 2018 |
“There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide.” This is the sentence Camus begins this essay with.
He ultimately refutes suicide as the right option in the face of the absurd. It's giving in to the absurd. It doesn't serve any purpose. Rather one must revolt against it by choosing to live.

Camus's absurd heroes hurl themselves into the absurd. They Create their own meaning in life by rebelling against absurd. In contrast, for kierkegaard to act upon the face of the absurd is to act upon faith. Now Camus considers this a philosophical suicide. For him, it is embracing the irrational. I’m not really sure about that, because for Kierkegaard, faith doesn’t preclude reason but it comes after that. Camus has a great mistrust of reason, but for him there is nothing beyond reason.

Now coming to the last part of Sisyphus.
If sisyphus's life is futile and hopeless, the rest of our lives are not any different either. All through our lives we engage in futile labour. We despair and suffer. But there can be no happiness without despair.

"One must imagine sisyphus happy".

This is the sentence the essay ends with. Sisyphus must be imagined to be happy because he chooses to be happy. Now Camus is very different to other existentialists. He is not really a philosopher. On one hand he places a lot of importance on human experience like Kierkegaard and Heidegger, but on the other hand he doesn’t give us any complete system of world-view like others. He doesn’t give us anything new, but he makes us see things in a different way. The absurd hero is happy because he chooses to be happy. So happiness here is a part of the absurdity.

( )
  kasyapa | Oct 9, 2017 |
a Big minus was that i have not read kafka, kierkegaard or dostoyevsky enough to fully absorb the references. However there were some great notions and remarks about life, the meaning and meaninglessness of it and a postmodern view into Eurpean (western) culture. ( )
  Kindnist85 | May 25, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Albert Camusprimary authorall editionscalculated
Lionni, LeoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
O'Brien, JustinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wood, JamesIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
O my soul, do not aspire to immortal life, but exhaust the limits of the possible.--Pindar, Pythian iii
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for Pascal Pia
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There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide.
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Information from the Norwegian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Alt det som får mennesket til å arbeide og uroe seg, benytter seg av håpet. Den eneste tanke som ikke er løgnaktig, er altså en ufruktbar tanke.
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Please use this work only for editions containing the following set of essays: The myth of Sisyphus -- Summer in Algiers -- The minotaur, or, The stop in Oran -- Helen's exile -- Return to Tipasa -- The artist and his time.
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One of the most influential works of this century, this is a crucial exposition of existentialist thought. Influenced by works such as Don Juan and the novels of Kafka, these essays begin with a meditation on suicide: the question of living or not living in an absurd universe devoid of order or meaning. With lyric eloquence, Camus posits a way out of despair, reaffirming the value of personal existence, and the possibility of life lived with dignity and authenticity.--From publisher description.… (more)

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