NOTEBOOKS 1942-1951

Are the journals of writers really significant? One thinks of Goethe or Gide and the answer is an automatic yes. One reads the second volume of Camus' Notebooks: 1942-1951 and , alas, no definite opinion is reached. The first entry offers a Nietzsche quotation: "Whatever does not kill me strengthens me. " And Camus adds: "Yes , but... how painful it is to dream of happiness." Here's the last entry (and by now Camus is 37): "Any fulfillment is a bondage. It obliges one to a higher fulfillment." Such is the nature of progress. Camus died young, relatively speaking. It is customary to think of him as the conscience of an age, and for page after page we are confronted with moral concerns, moral imperatives, and the pressure of events: the Resistance, the Cold War, the themes of Exile and of Absurdity, the question of Ideology. We learn of the philosophic and personal preoccupations behind The Stranger, Sisyphus, Caligula, The Rebel; we get snatches of the existentialist temper within Parisian circles; we view the dramatic break with Marleau-Ponty and Sartre; we follow Camus' political quest, his quarrel with Marxist abstractions, his hatred of totalitarianism. Fully acquainted with modernist negativity, he sought Mediterranean reasonableness, classical "lucidity," and- can it be denied?- romantic individualism. In The Rebel he stated: "Analysis of revolt leads at least to the suspicion that there is a human nature, as the Greeks thought, and contrary to the postulates of contemporary thought. " No wonder he was in conflict with Sartre; actually, he was in conflict with "the age." The appeal of Camus—as the Notebooks show over and over—is a nostalgic one. We respond not to his intellectual, rigor, but to his heroic invocation. In a dehumanized era he held to "boyish" ideals, to giving to life courage, beauty, style.

Pub Date: N/A

ISBN: 1569249679

Page Count: 274

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1965

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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