writings where people as humans struggle to find purpose and ask themselves what is the meaning of life to which the universe responses by simply showing a complete and utter disregard for such a question or any questions as a matter of fact. It is “This paradoxical situation, then, between our impulse to ask ultimate questions and the impossibility of achieving any adequate answer, is what Camus calls the absurd.” Existentialism essentially deals with the absurd which had been “cultural movement that flourished in Europe in the 1940s and 1950s.” and besides Albert Camus there was other Philosophers who adopted such ideas like “Karl Jaspers, Martin Heidegger, and Martin Buber in Germany, Jean Wahl and Gabriel Marcel in France, etc.….. [with]
At the time of his death on the fifteenth of April, 1980, at the age of seventy-four, Jean-Paul Sartre’s greatest literary and philosophical works were twenty-five years in the past. Although the small man existed in the popular mind as the politically inconsistent champion of unpopular causes and had spent the last seven years of his life in relative stagnation, his influence was still great enough to draw a crowd of over fifty thousand people – admirers or otherwise – for his funeral procession. Sartre was eminently quotable, a favorite in the press, because his statements were always controversial. He was the leader of the shortly popular Existential movement in philosophy which turned quickly into a fad for the disillusioned post-World War I generation, so even when the ideas criticized were not the ideas of Sartre’s Existentialism, he still came to the public mind. Sartre was alternately celebrated and vilified, depending on which side of the issue the speaker or writer was on, and whether or not Sartre had early espoused – and possibly later turned against – the ideals in question. Despite Sartre’s many political and philosophical about-faces, fellow Marxist political philosopher Herbert Marcuse said of him, “He may not want to be the world’s conscience, but he is.” [Hayman, 458]
It is believed that the Theatre of the Absurd was a reaction to the brutal devastation caused by the modern warfare used in the Second World War. Most of the plots involved in the productions of this theatre style don’t have any connection to the war itself, but rather strive to capture the same feeling that the war caused; hopelessness, emptiness, and the precariousness of life. The Absurdist movement began as an experimental theatre style in Paris. As a result, most of the early Absurdist productions were written entirely in French, even after the theatre style was adopted by other countries. The first wide scale absurdist production was “The Maids” written by Jean Genet in 1947. This play is absurdity at its finest, and follows two maids that are trapped inside a 1940’s mansion while their employer is out of town. “When their employer, only referred to as M...
Human beings are born everyday and when brought into this world, the only wish many parents have for them is to pursue their dreams and be themselves. The world thrives off human existence as well as individuality. This life can be absurd at times, but containing the absurdity and making life realistic is the ultimate goal. For Existentialists this world is absurd or at least they try to make it absurd. Franz Kafka is one Existentialist who makes life absurd in many books. Throughout Kafka’s work, “the existentialists ' conceptions of absurdity and dread are fully explored. Unlike the later existentialists, he did not derive a positive value from these modes of experience; the value of his writings lies in the intense lucidity of the exploration”
Sartre and his existentialist philosophy have been subjects of curiosity for me for years. Only recently, after taking a philosophy class, have I begun to grasp some of the major principals of existentialism. Though I'm unsure about some of the peripheral arguments and implications of existentialism, the core of the system appeals strongly to me: Human beings are themselves the basis of values and meaning, and in this sense values are real--evolving, developing, and real. Existentialism places the individual at the center of things, gives him a sense of empowerment and responsibility, and erects a bridge on which Man can find his way out of many of the traps and snares he constructs for himself. Sartre's character in the play "No Exit," Orestes, finds such freedom and, in a humanist sense, is one of the most enviable characters I encountered in this course.
philosophical or, more specifically, existentially absurd, are popular with mainstream audiences and at the same time have elicited at least, since the early 1970’s substantial serious criticism.
Existentialism as a contemporary philosophical trend reached the zenith of its popularity in the years following the war, the time when Europe was in a despairing mood, perhaps not without the hope of social reconstruction but pessimistic and morbid enough to accept the existentialist outlook of the lack of design and intention in the universe and the nausea of human existence and its frustration. The most important philosopher of existentialist in its celebrated form was the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980), recognized as the most powerful intellectual force in France in the mid-20th century.
This paper attempts to discuss the main features of existentialist views as well as dissect Sartre's Theory into two parts, analysing its merits and consequent demerit.
In Jean Paul Sartre’s 1938 novel, Nausea, the protagonist, Antoine Roquentin questions the existence and purpose of objects and himself. He ultimately discovers the answer to be nothingness for one creates their own meanings and connections to the past and reality. Roquentin is a victim of self-deception and through the narrative point of view and word choice conveyed, it is clear that he lies to himself that he must exist in the present to escape the meaningless past.
“What does God want? Does God want goodness or the choice of goodness? Is a man who chooses the bad perhaps in some way better than a man who has the good imposed upon him?” (Burgess, A Clockwork Orange, part two, chapter 3)