There have been as many plagues as wars in history – and they made people ask the same questions about sacrifice, love, death, and destiny.. Seventy years after its release, the classic novel from the master of the absurd is more relevant than ever before. The Plague Summary. You can test out of the The Plague (French: La Peste) is a novel by Albert Camus, published in 1947, that tells the story from the point of view of an unknown narrator of a plague sweeping the French Algerian city of Oran. Unless it insults you, in which case, give it the silent treatment for a bit. The authorities finally arrange for the daily collection and cremation of the rats. Albert Camus (/ k æ ˈ m uː / kam-OO, US also / k ə ˈ m uː / kə-MOO, French: [albɛʁ kamy] (); 7 November 1913 – 4 January 1960) was a French philosopher, author, and journalist. His works include The Stranger, The Plague, The Myth of Sisyphus, The Fall, and The Rebel. Ah, yes, 194–, we remember it fondly. Rambert and Cottard make plans to sneak out of Oran. JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. This lesson will focus on the summary and setting of the novel. Late in 1942, he cautions himself not to include the word in the title. Camus won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957 for the body of his work, and this existentialist novel is considered one of his best. People begin to go crazy in Oran. The most potent imagery is of the plague as a sentient being, stalking the populace and affecting every aspect of their lives. With William Hurt, Sandrine Bonnaire, Jean-Marc Barr, Robert Duvall. In the book, the exact year of the plague is never given, it's just written as ''194--.'' If you followed the instructions and still have a problem with your download, please completely read the HELP/PROBLEMS section on this site. People keep dying. In April, thousands of rats climb up from the sewers and die. Get access risk-free for 30 days, In The Plague, by Albert Camus, is the story hopeful or despairing about the human condition? This objective tone is particularly important because by underplaying the sensationalism of the plague, he hopes to startle our intellect more completely to its lessons. and we can email you the file as soon as possible (please include your order number and the name listed in the order form in your email). Worse, the plague mutates and is now more contagious. has thousands of articles about every The 1940s were World War II time, at least from 1939 to 1945. Each time, he's stopped. Select a subject to preview related courses: To unlock the next lesson you must be a Member. The Plague. Sciences, Culinary Arts and Personal Albert Camus’ ‘The Plague’ and our own Great Reset Two police officers are the only ones on Rome’s Spanish Steps on March 10 amid the coronavirus outbreak. © copyright 2003-2021 The history behind Oran (and Algeria) is essential to understanding The Plague. "Trust us; all this information isn’t accidental. In Oran, a coastal town in North Africa, the plague begins as a series of portents Albert Camus in the 1950s / Photo by Robert Edwards, Wikimedia Commons. flashcard set{{course.flashcardSetCoun > 1 ? The Plague tells the tale of a fictional outbreak of plague in the real city of Oran, Algeria — the same country where author Albert Camus was born. Did rats cause the Great Plague of London in 1665? Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support. It’s ugly, he says, a "thoroughly negative place." The novel presents a snapshot of life in Oran as seen through the author's distinctive absurdist point of view. Log in here for access. Both men are acting strangely: Cottard is very nervous around policemen, and Grand, despite almost complete inability to find the right words, is trying to write a book and a letter to his ex-wife. An error occurred trying to load this video. From the title, you know this book is about a plague. Camus also uses imagery to depict how hellish a place Oran is to live during the plague—unrelentingly hot, windy, stormy, and barren—and how painful the disease is for the sufferers—such as with the Othon boy's drawn-out death scene. Picture: Shutterstock Working Scholars® Bringing Tuition-Free College to the Community. Rising action is when the action begins after the exposition and builds up to the climax. The Plague, written in 1948, is a fictional account of events that take place in a North African town that is stricken with a fatal contagion. Eventually, they declare a … Seen by many as a reflection of World War II, this novel traces both the suffering and courage of the residents of Oran, Algeria, a town on the northern coast of Africa on the Mediterranean Sea. Many consider this novel to be a war allegory of the French resistance to the Nazis in World War II, pointing out the futility of human aspirations and the inevitability of suffering. Enrolling in a course lets you earn progress by passing quizzes and exams. It deals with a variation of the bubonic plague, which … The town's quarantine is lifted, and Rambert reunites with his lover. Albert Camus published The Plague in 1947. By entering your email address you agree to receive emails from Shmoop and verify that you are over the age of 13. first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. The inaction of the Prefect and other authorities becomes about not standing up to injustice, and Rieux and Tarrou are seen as heroes of something like the French Resistance. Camus is often considered an existentialist, but the philosophy he most identified with and developed was called absurdism. The plague starts in the port town of Oran in Algeria. Amazingly, it cures him. We further learn that "Oran is grafted on to a unique landscape, in the center of a bare plateau, ringed with luminous hills and above a perfectly shaped bay." The plague itself is thematic. The Plague is a novel written by Albert Camus, an ultimately bleak story about a terrible illness that swept through an unprepared town. What is Inference? How Do I Use's Assign Lesson Feature? The narrator mentions that "the seasons are discriminated only in the sky," which suggests that things are just as mundane and repetitive before the plague begins as after it has settled in. Dori has taught college and high school English courses, and has Masters degrees in both literature and education. We don’t know exactly what year The Plague takes place, since all the narrator tells us in his introductory chapter is that it was "194–." {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}} lessons France made Algeria a colony, and it was still under French control in the 1940s. All right, let's take a moment to review what we've learned. The Plague by Albert Camus Essay 1998 Words | 8 Pages. The town doctor, Dr. Bernard Rieux, is very worried about the way the rats die. The Plague is a novel by Albert Camus that was first published in 1947. © 2021 Shmoop University Inc | All Rights Reserved | Privacy | Legal. Philosophers in the Blogosphere: 10 Top Philosophy Blogs. Anyone can earn Is the Spanish flu pandemic the same as the Black Plague? Why? The Plague, by Albert Camus, is about a plague epidemic in the Algerian city of Oran, and follows the lives of Dr. Rieux and his colleagues. Create an account to start this course today. This illness is actually the Bubonic plague, better known to history as the Black Death, that consumed medieval Europe. 's' : ''}}. The death toll passes 700 a week, and many people barricade themselves in their homes. They also indicate his continuing insistence that his book carry his metaphysical ideas of the absurd. Father Paneloux admits his faith is shaken after watching the child die. Decisions Revisited: Why Did You Choose a Public or Private College? The native Arabs were seen as inferior to the descendants of the original French colonists, and things were very far from equal, as Tarrou writes about in his diary. 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