Albert Camus

On this date in 1913, Nobel Prize-winning writer Albert Camus was born in Mondovi, Algeria, to immigrant parents: a French father and a Spanish mother. After his father died during World War I in 1914, Albert's family was left in extreme poverty. Albert excelled in athletics and academics, and entered the University of Algiers studying philosophy, although a serious bout of tuberculosis cut short his studies. He joined the anti-Fascist communist party in 1934, but was soon after expelled from the Algerian Communist Party as a "Trotskyist." Camus wrote for a socialist paper in the late 1930s chronicling the plight of the poor. In 1940, Camus went to Paris, fled after the German invasion, returned to Algeria, was advised to leave, and at age 25, found himself back in Paris. Camus joined the Resistance, and after liberation was a columnist for the newspaper Combat. Major writings include the essay, "The Myth of Sisyphus," 1942, L'Etranger (The Stranger), 1942, La Peste (The Plague), 1947, which includes a priest character who insists a plague was sent as punishment from God, La Chute (The Fall), 1956, and L'Exile et le Royaume (Exile and the Kingdom), 1957, the year he won the Nobel Prize in Literature. Camus was a pioneer of absurdist literature, a nonbeliever and a humanist. D. 1960.

“[Camus'] anti-Christianity is one of the most absolute of modern times.”

—Seymour-Smith, Who's Who in Twentieth-Century Literature (1976), cited by Warren Allen Smith in Who's Who in Hell

Compiled by Annie Laurie Gaylor; OK - By Photograph by United Press International [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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