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Bienvenue sur le site de l'Institut Français d'Afrique du Sud !
First published in the aftermath of World War II, "The Plague" chronicles the sweeping of Oran, a city of then French Algeria, by the disease. The inhabitants of the city try to find a response, some showing great courage while others endeavour to escape. The text is often read as a metaphor for the various reactions to the brutal occupation of Europe by the Nazis.
Despite Camus' objection to the label, "The Plague" is considered as a classic of existentialist literature, where the irrationality of life sweeps individual ambitions and the "absurd" ultimately triumphs. "The Plague" aims to illustrate how the world ultimately deals with the notion of the"absurd", that is the conflict between the human tendency to seek a meaning in life and the impossibility to ultimately find any. Camus further extended this thinking in "The Rebel", a philosophical essay published a few years after "The Plague".