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The Myth of Sisyphus

a book review

product linkThe Myth of Sisyphus
authorAlbert Camus
date reviewed2007.02.09
genrePhilosophy
isbn0141023996

I don't know exactly what this book is about. Thje blurb on the cover of my copy says, "there is but one truly serious philosophical problem and that is suicide". Fine.

But the book itself is nothing but one impenetrably dense paragraph after another. But even caling them paragraphs is a bit much, because there aren't cogent thoughts in this work. Lacking either a means of tying consecutive thoughts together or even an odd ray of clarity, this book seems targetted strictly at fellow philosophers of the same insider's coded language and the same time era.

All the while, it is loaded with references to the work of other philosophers. At times this gets to the point where Camus's book reads more like a critique of the other's work rather than a communication of his own thoughts.

And even at those times he's unclear. I don't know if this is a problem of translation from French to English, but I doubt it. Arch expressions and unexplained statements persist to the point that it's not even clear at times what these discussions intend to produce.

This is probably the least accessible book I've picked up since flipping through the opening bits of my grandfather's early King James version of the bible. It's about 130 pages long and I made it about half-way through on my third effort.

I clearly have no mind for philosophy. Back to social studies and sci-fi for me!

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rand()m quote

Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. For this reason mastery demands all of a person.

—Albert Einstein