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Algerian Chronicles By Albert Camus

Algerian Chronicles

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An exploration of the author's commitment to Algeria. It is an analysis of the dead end of terrorism.

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Algerian Chronicles Summary


Algerian Chronicles by Albert Camus

More than fifty years after Algerian independence, Albert Camus' Algerian Chronicles appears here in English for the first time. Published in France in 1958, the same year the Algerian War brought about the collapse of the Fourth French Republic, it is one of Camus' most political works--an exploration of his commitments to Algeria. Dismissed or disdained at publication, today Algerian Chronicles, with its prescient analysis of the dead end of terrorism, enjoys a new life in Arthur Goldhammer's elegant translation. "Believe me when I tell you that Algeria is where I hurt at this moment," Camus, who was the most visible symbol of France's troubled relationship with Algeria, writes, "as others feel pain in their lungs." Gathered here are Camus' strongest statements on Algeria from the 1930s through the 1950s, revised and supplemented by the author for publication in book form. In her introduction, Alice Kaplan illuminates the dilemma faced by Camus: he was committed to the defense of those who suffered colonial injustices, yet was unable to support Algerian national sovereignty apart from France. An appendix of lesser-known texts that did not appear in the French edition complements the picture of a moralist who posed questions about violence and counter-violence, national identity, terrorism, and justice that continue to illuminate our contemporary world.

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Algerian Chronicles Reviews


It was the last book Camus published in his lifetime, and it appears now in its entirety for the first time in English, expertly translated by Arthur Goldhammer. The editor, Alice Kaplan, has added six texts to Camus's original selection in an appendix, to further illuminate Camus's relation to Algeria... As the writings in "Algerian Chronicles"

make clear, Camus's position in 'no man's land' left him increasingly isolated: hated

by the right for his condemnation of government policies, scorned by the left for his inability to imagine an independent Algeria from which the French would be absent...As Kaplan points out, we cannot know how he would have reacted to the final years of the war, or to the independence that followed. We do know that his ethical positions are

still meaningful, worldwide.--Susan Rubin Suleiman"New York Times Book Review" (05/12/2013)


Algerian Chronicles"...comprises everything Camus wrote on Algeria...Camus's writing on Kabylia is a marvel of eloquence. His sympathy for the people, his critique of the colonial regime, his pain over the injustices that he witnesses--all thrilling. Seventy years after he wrote these pieces the reader is still penetrated by their literary beauty. But at no time in Algerian Chronicles" are we listening to the speaking voice of a revolutionary. It is the voice of a despairing citizen who does not want his country's government overthrown; he wants it to do better by its people. He wants France to remain in Algeria, but to honor its own founding myths of liberty, equality, and fraternity. The pieces in Algerian Chronicles" that were written years later in France, during the war for independence, are repetitive pleas for each side to stop demonizing the other, for human decency to prevail.
--Vivian Gornick"Boston Review" (07/01/2013)
Read today, the articles brim with [Camus's] trademark Mediterranean passion, the sensibility that lent all his literary works their moral and lyrical depth...Prove[s] indispensable to a fuller understanding of the intellectual history of 20th-century Europe.
--Arlice Davenport"Wichita Eagle" (07/29/2013)
Among the French writers, not too many people in those days, back in the 1930s, appeared to care one way or another about Algeria and its poverty. You could read about the erotic and exotic dream-life of Andre Gide, but not about injustice. Camus was a pioneer.
--Paul Berman"New Republic" (08/19/2013)"
Algerian Chronicles."..comprises everything Camus wrote on Algeria...Camus's writing on Kabylia is a marvel of eloquence. His sympathy for the people, his critique of the colonial regime, his pain over the injustices that he witnesses--all thrilling. Seventy years after he wrote these pieces the reader is still penetrated by their literary beauty. But at no time in Algerian Chronicles" are we listening to the speaking voice of a revolutionary. It is the voice of a despairing citizen who does not want his country's government overthrown; he wants it to do better by its people. He wants France to remain in Algeria, but to honor its own founding myths of liberty, equality, and fraternity. The pieces in Algerian Chronicles" that were written years later in France, during the war for independence, are repetitive pleas for each side to stop demonizing the other, for human decency to prevail.
--Vivian Gornick"Boston Review" (07/01/2013)

About Albert Camus


Albert Camus (1913-1960), Algerian-French novelist, essayist, and playwright, won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957. Arthur Goldhammer received the French-American Translation Prize in 1990 for his translation of A Critical Dictionary of the French Revolution. Alice Kaplan is John M. Musser Professor of French and chair of the Department of French at Yale University.

Additional information

GOR005870028
Algerian Chronicles by Albert Camus
Albert Camus
Used - Very Good
Hardback
Harvard University Press
2013-05-07
154
0674072588
9780674072589
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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