The Plague

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(1913 - )
Albert Camus (/kæˈmuː/ kam-OO, US also /kəˈmuː/ kə-MOO, French: [albɛʁ kamy] (About this soundlisten); 7 November 1913 – 4 January 1960) was a French philosopher, author, and journalist. He won the Nobel Prize in Literature at the age of 44 in 1957, the second-youngest recipient in history. His works include The Stranger, The Plague, The Myth of Sisyphus, The Fall, and The Rebel. Camus was born in Algeria (a French colony at the time) to French Pieds Noirs parents. His citizenship was French. He spent his childhood in a poor neighborhood and later studied philosophy at the University of Algiers. He was in Paris when the Germans invaded France during World War II in 1940. Camus tried to flee but finally joined the French Resistance where he served as editor-in-chief at Combat, an outlawed newspaper. After the war, he was a celebrity figure and gave many lectures around the world. He married twice but had many extramarital... (From :


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It is as reasonable to represent one kind of imprisonment by another, as it is to represent anything that really exists by that which exists not. DANIEL DEFOE PART I The unusual events described in this chronicle occurred in 194- at Oran. Everyone agreed that, considering their somewhat extraordinary character, they were out of place there. For its ordinariness is what strikes one first about the town of Oran, which is merely a large French port on the Algerian coast, headquarters of the Prefect of a French Department. The town itself, let us admit, is ugly. It has a smug, placid air and you need time to discover what it is that makes it different from so many business centers in other parts of the world. How to conjure up a picture, for instance, of a town without pigeons, without any trees or gardens, where you never hear the beat of wings or the rustle of leaves, a thor... (From :

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PART II From now on, it can be said that plague was the concern of all of us. Hitherto, surprised as he may have been by the strange things happening around him, each individual citizen had gone about his business as usual, so far as this was possible. And no doubt he would have continued doing so. But once the town gates were shut, every one of us realized that all, the narrator included, were, so to speak, in the same boat, and each would have to adapt himself to the new conditions of life. Thus, for example, a feeling normally as individual as the ache of separation from those one loves suddenly became a feeling in which all shared alike and, together with fear, the greatest affliction of the long period of exile that lay ahead. One of the most striking consequences of the closing of the gates was, in fact, this sudden deprivation befalling people who were completely unprepared for it. Mothers and children, lovers, husbands an... (From :

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PART III Thus week by week the prisoners of plague put up what fight they could. Some, like Rambert, even contrived to fancy they were still behaving as free men and had the power of choice. But actually it would have been truer to say that by this time, mid-August, the plague had swallowed up everything and everyone. No longer were there individual destinies; only a collective destiny, made of plague and the emotions shared by all. Strongest of these emotions was the sense of exile and of deprivation, with all the crosscurrents of revolt and fear set up by these. That is why the narrator thinks this moment, registering the climax of the summer heat and the disease, the best for describing, on general lines and by way of illustration, the excesses of the living, burials of the dead, and the plight of parted lovers. It was at this time that a high wind rose and blew for several days through the plague-stricken city. Wind is partic... (From :

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PART IV Throughout September and October the town lay prostrate, at the mercy of the plague. There was nothing to do but to "mark time," and some hundreds of thousands of men and women went on doing this, through weeks that seemed interminable. Mist, heat, and rain rang their changes in our streets. From the south came silent coveys of starlings and thrushes, flying very high, but always giving the town a wide berth, as though the strange implement of the plague described by Paneloux, the giant flail whirling and shrilling over the housetops, warned them off us. At the beginning of October torrents of rain swept the streets clean. And all the time nothing more important befell us than that multitudinous marking time. It was now that Rieux and his friends came to realize how exhausted they were. Indeed, the workers in the sanitary squads had given up trying to cope with their fatigue. Rieux... (From :

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PART V Though this sudden setback of the plague was as welcome as it was unlooked-for, our townsfolk were in no hurry to jubilate. While intensifying their desire to be set free, the terrible months they had lived through had taught them prudence, and they had come to count less and less on a speedy end of the epidemic. All the same, this new development was the talk of the town, and people began to nurse hopes none the less heartfelt for being unavowed. All else took a back place; that daily there were new victims counted for little beside that staggering fact: the weekly total showed a decrease. One of the signs that a return to the golden age of health was secretly awaited was that our fellow citizens, careful though they were not to voice their hope, now began to talk, in, it is true, a carefully detached tone, of the new order of life that would set in after the plague. All agreed that the amenities of the past couldn't be restored at onc... (From :


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