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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 2 September 2013
This is a collection of mostly journalistic writings by Camus about Algeria written between 1939 and 1958. Camus was part of the French settler community in Algeria, but he was not part of the privileged elite as he came from a working class background. He felt both French and Algerian. The settler community was both long established and numerous. The earlier articles are factual accounts of the hardships of the Algerian people. The later articles are his comments on the heartbreaking situation in his homeland, written from metropolitan France. This is the first time that many of these articles have been published in English and to an English speaking audience most of the context of these articles will be unfamiliar. Camus wrote about a country that he hoped could be French and Berber and Arab. He took a humane middle way but found himself continuously and despairingly thwarted by the steam-roller of historical events.

THE BOOK
The book begins with a note from the translator followed by an 18 page introduction by Alice Kaplan, a professor of French at Yale. The Algerian Chronicles proper begins with a 13 page preface by Camus, followed by 6 sections. The Misery of Kabylia (1939) is a set of newspaper articles on the famine in the Kabylia region of Algeria. Although edited for publication in Algerian Chronicles these are still very detailed, factual reportage. The original publication of these articles contributed to Camus's exile from Algeria. The Crisis in Algeria (1945) contains articles first published in the French Resistance newspaper Combat. Algerian Torn (1956) appeared in L'Express. The Maisonseul Affair (1956) first appeared in Le Monde. Algeria 1958 contains two short articles offering solutions to the Algerian crisis. The Appendix contains a selection of letters and lectures that do not appear in the French edition. It includes a note on the "Noble Prize Press Conference Incident" in 1957, with Camus's famous quote in response to an Algerian student: "People are now planting bombs in the tramways of Algiers. My mother might be on one of those tramways. If that is justice, then I prefer my mother."

CONCLUSION
These articles are of their time and together do not provide a continuous story. Also, as the translator points out, they have lost some of the elegance of the original French in translation. However, they are rewarding to read, showing Camus as a journalist rather than as a novelist, giving insights into the recent histories of both France and Algeria and the original Arab Spring, but above all demonstrating the dilemmas faced by any minority living in a country undergoing massive sectarian upheaval.

FRENCH ALGERIA
In 1830 the French invaded Algiers and the major coastal towns. The conquest of all of the country was completed in 1848. There followed a policy of settling French nationals. The fall of France in 1940 encouraged nationalism in Algeria, which continued after the end of the war. This was strongly resisted by many of the French settlers. Armed rebellion increased, leading to Algerian independence in 1962.

LINKS
DVD The Battle Of Algiers (1965)
Camus Resistance, Rebellion, and Death (1961) contains articles by Camus, some of which appear in Algerian Chronicles
Camus The Outsider, a novel
Camus Exile and the Kingdom, short stories
0Comment|One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 11 August 2013
Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, jaw is better than war, war."
. The Media has changed in the sense that while The Pen could still be said to be mightier than The Sword, the razor edge is now in the hands of television, the newscasters and - rarely - a public figure of great stature.
Albert Camus was 47 when he was killed in a car crash and many believed his intellectual powers surpassed Sartre. There seems no doubt that his eminence would have been heightened by his advance in years.

Camus was critical of Metropolitan France and his heart belonged to Algeria but above these priorities was his ability to string words together that spoke to enemies and friends alike because he spoke The Truth.
Algerian Chronicles was printed in France in l958 to critical silence and the anger of Paris where many politicians considered his writings to be highly subversive. Camus wrote it as he saw it, his truth of public events and tragedies. Truly he was also The Good Reporter.
The Men's Book Group considered this a brilliant book that the passing years have embellished rather than dimmed.
First published by Editions Gallimard under the title Chroniques algeriiennes 1939-1958 and Reprinted in Paris 2002, this first English version was published by an adjunct of the Harvard Press in 2013, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, with an introduction by Alice Kaplan

End

Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, jaw is better than war, war."
. The Media has changed in the sense that while The Pen could still be said to be mightier than The Sword, the razor edge is now in the hands of television, the newscasters and - rarely - a public figure of great stature.
Albert Camus was 47 when he was killed in a car crash and many believed his intellectual powers surpassed Sartre. There seems no doubt that his eminence would have been heightened by his advance in years.

Camus was critical of Metropolitan France and his heart belonged to Algeria but above these priorities was his ability to string words together that spoke to enemies and friends alike because he spoke The Truth.
Algerian Chronicles was printed in France in l958 to critical silence and the anger of Paris where many politicians considered his writings to be highly subversive. Camus wrote it as he saw it, his truth of public events and tragedies. Truly he was also The Good Reporter.
The Men's Book Group considered this a brilliant book that the passing years have embellished rather than dimmed.
First published by Editions Gallimard under the title Chroniques algeriiennes 1939-1958 and Reprinted in Paris 2002, this first English version was published by an adjunct of the Harvard Press in 2013, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, with an introduction by Alice Kaplan

End

Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, jaw is better than war, war."
. The Media has changed in the sense that while The Pen could still be said to be mightier than The Sword, the razor edge is now in the hands of television, the newscasters and - rarely - a public figure of great stature.
Albert Camus was 47 when he was killed in a car crash and many believed his intellectual powers surpassed Sartre. There seems no doubt that his eminence would have been heightened by his advance in years.

Camus was critical of Metropolitan France and his heart belonged to Algeria but above these priorities was his ability to string words together that spoke to enemies and friends alike because he spoke The Truth.
Algerian Chronicles was printed in France in l958 to critical silence and the anger of Paris where many politicians considered his writings to be highly subversive. Camus wrote it as he saw it, his truth of public events and tragedies. Truly he was also The Good Reporter.
The Men's Book Group considered this a brilliant book that the passing years have embellished rather than dimmed.
First published by Editions Gallimard under the title Chroniques algeriiennes 1939-1958 and Reprinted in Paris 2002, this first English version was published by an adjunct of the Harvard Press in 2013, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, with an introduction by Alice Kaplan

End

Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, jaw is better than war, war."
. The Media has changed in the sense that while The Pen could still be said to be mightier than The Sword, the razor edge is now in the hands of television, the newscasters and - rarely - a public figure of great stature.
Albert Camus was 47 when he was killed in a car crash and many believed his intellectual powers surpassed Sartre. There seems no doubt that his eminence would have been heightened by his advance in years.

Camus was critical of Metropolitan France and his heart belonged to Algeria but above these priorities was his ability to string words together that spoke to enemies and friends alike because he spoke The Truth.
Algerian Chronicles was printed in France in l958 to critical silence and the anger of Paris where many politicians considered his writings to be highly subversive. Camus wrote it as he saw it, his truth of public events and tragedies. Truly he was also The Good Reporter.
The Men's Book Group considered this a brilliant book that the passing years have embellished rather than dimmed.
First published by Editions Gallimard under the title Chroniques algeriiennes 1939-1958 and Reprinted in Paris 2002, this first English version was published by an adjunct of the Harvard Press in 2013, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, with an introduction by Alice Kaplan

End

Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, jaw is better than war, war."
. The Media has changed in the sense that while The Pen could still be said to be mightier than The Sword, the razor edge is now in the hands of television, the newscasters and - rarely - a public figure of great stature.
Albert Camus was 47 when he was killed in a car crash and many believed his intellectual powers surpassed Sartre. There seems no doubt that his eminence would have been heightened by his advance in years.

Camus was critical of Metropolitan France and his heart belonged to Algeria but above these priorities was his ability to string words together that spoke to enemies and friends alike because he spoke The Truth.
Algerian Chronicles was printed in France in l958 to critical silence and the anger of Paris where many politicians considered his writings to be highly subversive. Camus wrote it as he saw it, his truth of public events and tragedies. Truly he was also The Good Reporter.
The Men's Book Group considered this a brilliant book that the passing years have embellished rather than dimmed.
First published by Editions Gallimard under the title Chroniques algeriiennes 1939-1958 and Reprinted in Paris 2002, this first English version was published by an adjunct of the Harvard Press in 2013, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, with an introduction by Alice Kaplan

End

Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, jaw is better than war, war."
. The Media has changed in the sense that while The Pen could still be said to be mightier than The Sword, the razor edge is now in the hands of television, the newscasters and - rarely - a public figure of great stature.
Albert Camus was 47 when he was killed in a car crash and many believed his intellectual powers surpassed Sartre. There seems no doubt that his eminence would have been heightened by his advance in years.

Camus was critical of Metropolitan France and his heart belonged to Algeria but above these priorities was his ability to string words together that spoke to enemies and friends alike because he spoke The Truth.
Algerian Chronicles was printed in France in l958 to critical silence and the anger of Paris where many politicians considered his writings to be highly subversive. Camus wrote it as he saw it, his truth of public events and tragedies. Truly he was also The Good Reporter.
The Men's Book Group considered this a brilliant book that the passing years have embellished rather than dimmed.
First published by Editions Gallimard under the title Chroniques algeriiennes 1939-1958 and Reprinted in Paris 2002, this first English version was published by an adjunct of the Harvard Press in 2013, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, with an introduction by Alice Kaplan

End

Camus 1

Algerian Chronicles

By Albert Camus

A review for the Cote d'Azur Men's Book Group by IRB Hibbitt

Death walks the streets, the squares and the souks. A reporter sent out by his news editor to find out what is really happening views the thousands of rioters and prays for an end to the lunacy but the hatred evident in the faces of his fellow countrymen fill him with despair.
The Cote d'Azur Book Group debated whether there are any modern writers of the same quality as Albert Camus who wrote the fascinating Algerian Chronicles and decided there is not. We are now all reporters thanks to the mobile phone. The crystalline prose of a writer such as Camus is almost matchless in modern journalism.
That reporter -Albert Camus - born as a Frenchman- is destined to rise to celebrity status both as a Nobel Prize winner for literature and as a peacemaker, politician and philosopher whose words were as vital as the carved message on a loved one's grave.
The scene is not Syria where we see death and destruction televised daily but a glimpse into the past of a French colony over fifty years ago. Algeria, the Arab country that finally fought and won its independence and was home to French settlers, Arabs and Islamists in the 1950s a so-called French department and today ruled by the rarely seen President Bouteflika.

Let us take another look at that reporter, the black haired, former professional soccer player working for Alger republicain He spent time in Kabylia a mountainous region where thousands were treated harshly both by their rulers and the stringent living conditions that gave them only grain and olives and nowhere enough to survive or have a healthy life
What he saw in the lateThirties in that region left an indelible stain of disgust. Workers were lucky if they got a few francs for a day's work. The price of their staple foodstuffs was raised to disastrous levels and any Arab who wanted to settle in the home country was both harshly taxed and expected to pay the taxes of anyone who shared his surname.
Many people slept at night huddled around a fire but if they tried to load a donkey with brushwood they would be harassed the following morning and the vital donkey could be seized.
While the French later gave villages the possibilities of becoming communes, a love and hate philosophy also meant that it was usual for ships loaded with malcontents to be seen sailing off to prison.
Inevitably, most of this compilation of Camus articles is centred on the fight for independence where his solution was for a truce and a sense of greater fairness and equality He bravely criticised the Front de Liberation Nationale, the freedom fighters who met force with force.
He was equally disgusted by the attitudes of the metropolitan French and wrote
after his Kabyila piece that "One is not a good Frenchman if one speaks of a French territory. I must say it is hard to know what one must do to be a good Frenchman".
Would he have the same view today? What would he make of our world of terrorism, suicide bombers and the mayhem of Syria and other Middle East countries, and the Arab Spring? Possibly, as a good Frenchman and peace lover he would paraphrase Winston Churchill, and agree that" jaw, ja
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 September 2014
much enjoyed.
RD
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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