The Plague (Penguin Modern Classics) Paperback – 5 Dec 2002
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
About the Author
Albert Camus is the author of a number of best-selling and highly influential works, all of which are published by Penguin. They include THE FALL, THE OUTSIDER and THE FIRST MAN. He is remembered as one of the few writers to have shaped the intellectual climate of post-war France, but beyond that, his fame has been international. Translated by Robin Buss With an Introduction by Tony Judt
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
What is the meaning of life? For many, that question is an abstraction except in the context of being aware of losing some of the joys of life, or life itself. In The Plague, Camus creates a timeless tale of humans caught in the jaws of implacable death, in this case a huge outbreak of bubonic plague in Oran, Algeria on the north African coast. With the possibility of dying so close, each character comes to see his or her life differently. In a sense, we each get a glimpse of what we, too, may think about life in the last hours and days before our own deaths. The Plague will leave you with a sense of death as real rather than as an abstraction. Then by reflecting in the mirror of that death, you can see life more clearly.
For example, what role would you take if bubonic plague were to be unleashed in your community? Would you flee? Would you help relieve the suffering? Would you become a profiteer? Would you help maintain order? Would you withdraw or seek out others? These are all important questions for helping you understand yourself that this powerful novel will raise for you.
The book is described as objectively as possible by a narrator, who is one of the key figures in the drama. That literary device allows each of us to insert ourselves into the situation.
Let me explain the main themes. Love is expressed in many ways. There is the love of men and women for each other. Dr. Rieux's wife is ill, and has just left for treatment at a sanitarium. Rambert, a journalist on temporary assignment, is separated from his live-in girl friend in Paris. Dr. Rieux's mother comes to stay with him during his mother's absence, so there is also love of parent and child.Read more ›
A word to the wise: when large numbers of rats come out of the woodwork and commence dying nasty, bloody deaths in the streets and houses, public health is in danger. In the port city of Oran, the population ignores the signs of danger and only grudgingly admits that an epidemic, a form of the bubonic plague to be exact, has taken root in their city. The protagonist, Dr. Rieux, is a doctor who finally helps convince the authorities to take extreme measures in the interest of public safety and to eventually close the gates to town. Over the course of the novel, we get to observe the manner in which Dr. Rieux, his companions, and prominent men of the community react to the worsening plague and its social consequences. Dr. Rieux has just sent his unhealthy wife off to a sanitarium before the plague breaks out, and he must suffer her absence alongside the stresses of working 20+ hours a day trying to save people's lives while accomplishing little more than watching them die horrible deaths. Dr.Read more ›
We readers meet a fascinating 'cast' of characters who reveal ever more about themselves, and in reflection about ourselves, under the pressures of the plague. From the admirable and compelling characters of Rieux and Tarrou, the transformation of Rambert, to the pitiful character of Cottard and the various other characters we see a broad spectrum of people that on the whole reminds us that there is more to admire about humanity than to dislike.
It is this pulling together in the face of an unpredictable adversary that underlined, for me, the "take home" lesson of the novel. Never sure of any final victory against nor escape from the plague most people choose to fight it anyway, to work together rather than against each other.
There is much written about The Plague as an allegory relating to the occupation of France in WW2 and of the symbolism. Many will read it because they are to do so as part of a literature course but I would recommend it anyway - it reads well and is thought provoking and interesting, well written (well translated anyway!) and if you don't know the outcomes then it does make one want to find out what happens to the various characters.
A great book indeed and one I am very glad I have read!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
In the town of Oran, rats begin to appear - in the houses, in the streets and scrabbling around the dustbins. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Colin Garrow
I should read more of this guy. Camus is quite simply a genius. I loved The Outsider and I loved this. Easy ahead of his time. I'm only sorry I haven't read it years agoPublished 18 months ago by charlie k
Written soon after the end of World War 2, this remains an important reminder of the ease with which ordinary 'good' people leading unremarkable lives can ignore or even... Read morePublished 21 months ago by A. Hall