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Existentialism in Albert Camus' The Plague and Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot

Project id 1015955
Subject area Self Improvement
Document type Essay
Words 1986
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Each of the characters in The Plague and Waiting For Godot exist in their fictional worlds. However, none is able to spell out why. Neither work provides an individual an explanation of human existence except to say that individuals exist. Providing an reply to this question of presence will create a paradox. To an existentialist, should you answer this question, then you've missed the entire point. Existentialism is a philosophy that emphasizes the uniqueness and isolation of the individual experience in a hostile or indifferent universe, regards human existence as unexplainable, and stresses freedom of choice and accountability for the consequences of one's acts (Bigelow 134). Fundamentally, existentialism addresses man's existence. An existentialist considers that man does not exist under God or as part of a society or race. Man will exist, and that is all. An explanation regarding why man exists cannot be found. In the end, someone is different not as a function of a greater good or bad; thus, the person is free to live his life (135). Existentialism as a literary movement is most often associated with post World War II France. The images which come to mind would be of Frenchmen using uncombed beards, smoky cellar cafes, along with beatniks conversing with one another on the topic of grief between sips of absinthe. But several of the most prominent existentialist authors had strict and significant adventures in the Resistance during the Nazi occupation of France (Lottman 54). From true despair they shaped ideas and introduced questions of amazing importance. They sought to know and explain human existence. They concluded that presence will be acknowledged, but could never be clarified. Two existentialist works are Samuel Beckett's Waiti...

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