Albert Camus is Awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature
The Nobel Prize in Literature 1957 was awarded to Albert Camus "for his important literary production, which with clear-sighted earnestness illuminates the problems of the human conscience in our times".
The Nobel Prize in Literature for 1957 was awarded today to Albert Camus, French novelist and Playwright. the Swedish Academy of Literature cited him as the world's foremost literary antagonist of totalitarianism.
The official Nobel citation, which carries with it an honorarium of $42,000, said M. Camus had been selected for the distinction because of 'his important literary production, which with clear-sighted earnestness illuminated the problems of the human conscience in our times.'
M. Camus, aged 43, becomes the youngest winner of the Nobel Literature prize since Rudyard Kipling, who was about a year younger when he received the honor in 1907
From 1955 to 1956 Camus wrote for L'Express. In 1957 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature "for his important literary production, which with clear-sighted earnestness illuminates the problems of the human conscience in our times", not for his novel The Fall, published the previous year, but for his writings against capital punishment in the essay Réflexions sur la Guillotine. When he spoke to students at the University of Stockholm, he defended his apparent inactivity in the Algerian question and stated that he was worried about what might happen to his mother, who still lived in Algeria. This led to further ostracism by French left-wing intellectuals.
When Camus heard, that he had won the Nobel Prize for Literature, he stated publicly that he would have voted for Malraux. At the time of his death, Camus was planning to direct a theater company of his own and to write a major novel about growing up in Algeria. Several of the short stories in L'EXILE ET LA ROYAUME (1957) were set in Algeria's coastal towns and inhospitale sands. The unfinished novel LA MORT HEUREUSE (1970) was written in 1936-38. It presented the young Camus, or Patrice Mersault, seeking his happiness from Prague to his hometown in Algiers, announcing towards the end of the book "What matters – all that matters, really – is the will to happiness, a kind of enormous, ever-present consciousness. The rest – women, art, success – is nothing but excuses." In LE PREMIER HOMME (1994), the story of Jacques Cormery, Camus charted the history of his family and his lycée years. The manuscript was found in the car, a Facel Vega, in which he died on January 4, 1960.