“ I do not believe firmly enough in reason to subscribe to the idea of progress or some philosophy of history. But at least I believe that men have not ceased to make progress in becoming aware of their own situation. We have not risen above our human condition, but we understand it better. We know that we are the victims of a dilemma; that we must refuse to accept it and do what is necessary to eradicate it. Our task as men is to find some formulas to pacify the great anguish of human kind. We must put together what has been torn apart; make justice a possibility in an obviously unjust world, render happiness meaningful to peoples poisoned by the suffering of our age.
(Do you know that over a period of twenty five years, between 1922 and 1947, 70 million Europeans – men, women and children – have been uprooted, departed and killed?)
This is of course a superhuman task, yet one simply calls “superhuman” those tasks which men take a very long time to accomplish”.
Albert Camus lived through childhood poverty, the first and second world wars and the Algerian war. He embraced then rejected Communism, was an existentialist before becoming a humanist. His writing encompasses the willingness for us to believe that the power of the spirit will always prevail over the power of the sword.