Albert Camus: A Very Short Introduction

ISBN : 9780198792970

Oliver Gloag
112 ページ
111 x 174 mm
Very Short Introductions



  • Explores the life and work of Albert Camus, major cultural icon of the twentieth century
  • Offers a comprehensive view of Camus' major works and interventions including his notion of the absurd and revolt
  • Analyses the enduring popularity of Camus in connection with contemporary political, social, and cultural issues

Few would question that Albert Camus (1913-1960), novelist, playwright, philosopher and journalist, is a major cultural icon. His widely quoted works have led to countless movie adaptions, graphic novels, pop songs, and even t-shirts.
In this Very Short Introduction, Oliver Gloag chronicles the inspiring story of Camus' life. From a poor fatherless settler in French-Algeria to the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, Gloag offers a comprehensive view of Camus' major works and interventions, including his notion of the absurd and revolt, as well as his highly original concept of pure happiness through unity with nature called "bonheur". This original introduction also addresses debates on coloniality, which have arisen around Camus' work.
Gloag presents Camus in all his complexity a staunch defender of many progressive causes, fiercely attached to his French-Algerian roots, a writer of enormous talent and social awareness plagued by self-doubt, and a crucially relevant author whose major works continue to significantly impact our views on contemporary issues and events.



1: Camus, son of France in Algeria
2: Camus, from reporter to editorialist
3: Camus and the absurd
4: Rebel without a cause
5: Camus and Sartre — the breaks that made them inseparable
6: Camus and Algeria
7: Camus' legacies

Further reading


Oliver Gloag, Associate Professor of French and Francophone Studies at the University of North Carolina, Asheville
Oliver Gloag is Associate Professor of French and Francophone Literature at the University of North Carolina, Asheville. He was educated at Columbia University, Tulane University (J.D.), and Duke University (Ph.D.); he specializes in francophone and postcolonial literature, twentieth century French literature, and cultural history. He has published on Sartre and Camus and contributed to The Sartrean Mind (Routledge). He is the author of a forthcoming book on the ideological and political claiming of Camus in contemporary France (La fabrique).

"Oliver Gloag presents Camus without apologies. The reader must come to terms with the paradox of the colonizer's unreasonable love of "home", his controversial sexual politics, and his luminous prose of anguish and integrity." - Professor Gayatri Spivak, author of A Critique of Postcolonial Reason

"An admirably concise but penetrating analysis of unresolved conflicts between Camus' humanism and his attachment to French Algeria as the key to his writing." - Robert O. Paxton, Emeritus Professor at Columbia University