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The Plague

3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  102,537 Ratings  ·  3,048 Reviews
The townspeople of Oran are in the grip of a deadly plague, which condemns its victims to a swift and horrifying death. Fear, isolation and claustrophobia follow as they are forced into quarantine. Each person responds in their own way to the lethal disease: some resign themselves to fate, some seek blame and revenge, and a few, like the unheroic hero Dr Rieux, join forces ...more
Paperback, 238 pages
Published December 5th 2002 by Penguin (first published June 1947)
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Ah, death; it's always there, isn't it? It is a terrible fate, doomed upon us all, that could take place at any time, in millions of different ways. The Jews who witnessed the holocaust are aware of this. The people of Haiti know this. The mother who lost her only child in a car accident is aware of this. Most individuals (and groups of individuals) spend their days fighting the fact of death, lying to themselves, using clever ways to avoid its ever-present reality. Looking death in its cold, in ...more
Rakhi Dalal
Oct 07, 2014 Rakhi Dalal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read “The Plague” right after reading “Swann’s Way”. Of course it wasn’t a deliberate move. But as I moved on, I realized that reading of ‘The Plague’ had rendered something quite remarkable in the way I realized and appreciated both works. Both works embody a reality. ‘Swann’s Way’ speaks of the reality that is long gone by and one wish to remember and cherish, whereas, ‘The Plague’ makes one more acutely aware of the bleakness of actual reality when imposed through an epidemic such as plague ...more
Oct 02, 2007 Poliwalk rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone wanting to ruminate on life, morality and religion.
This book has been one of the most influential in my life. Camus uses the premise of a town infected by the plague and quarantined from the rest of the world to explore some of the great philosophical questions. I find his exploration of religion very astute--that God is either not able to prevent evil and is thus not omnipotent or that God is all powerful and thus condones evil. Either option to Camus is a God not worthy of worship.

Many people read The Stranger and think Camus is a pessimist,
Petra X
This was as much an existentialist tract as it was a book about the descent of a town into plague, the gradient of the decline increasing exponentially until they reach the pit. There it is death and smoke and groans and every bit the imagined hell of those with a religious consciousness.

But the plague has no relationship to religion. The innocent die as much as the guilty. Shady people are sly by night, criminals escape justice, the great and the good die in their beds, the plague is the great
Jul 19, 2016 William1 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Second reading. This is an essential book. If there's a canon, The Plague belongs in it. A few things interested me this time through. Mostly the narrator's penchant, most effective, for writing about the town's collective mood. This device struck me as an improvement on the Soviet worker novels of the day (1947). The prose is not pumped up to triumphalist proportions. (There must be a scholar somewhere who's addresses this. I'll have to search LC.) Neither is there an idealized superman worker, ...more
Huda Yahya
ألبير كامي

لن يقتنع الآخرون بحججك، بإخلاصك، بحقيقة معاناتك إلا بموتك


الحقيقة كالضوء، تعمي
الكذب كالشفق الجميل الذي يسحر كل موجود


أحب الحياة- هذه هي نقطة ضعفي
أحبها بشكل كبير لدرجة أني غير قادر على أن تخيل عكسها


لتكون سعيدا فإنه من الضروري أن لا تهتم كثيرا بالآخرين


الإنسان لا يمكن أن يكون متيقنا من أي شيء


نحن مخلوقات إست
Mar 12, 2016 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When rats.....large grotesque rats begin dying everywhere across the coastal town of Oran in Northern Africa, an uneasy, but unheeded feeling among the townspeople gradually becomes reality with questions turning to fear and subsequent fever causing widespread panic.

As quarantines and sudden isolation from the outside world become a fact of life, our mild-mannered and selfless protagonist, Dr. Bernard Rieux maintains his cool despite exhaustion and the pestilence surrounding his long days.


Feb 15, 2013 Rowena rated it it was amazing
"Treeless, glamourless, soulless, the town of Oran ends by seeming restful and, after a while, you go complacently to sleep there."

The Plague is set in Oran, a city in Algeria that experiences a breakout of the Bubonic plague, and is soon placed under quarantine. We witness the changes among this community as they are cut off from the outside world; they experience all manners of emotions from hysteria, despondency, avarice, uncertainty,self-reflection and fear.

The Plague is definitely a depre
Dec 16, 2015 Lyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Albert Camus’ The Plague is a laugh RIOT!

Just kidding, it is about the bubonic plague, really not very funny at all. However, it is a modern masterpiece of allegory, symbolism and imagery. The surface story is about plague in the early 1940s visiting the Algerian coastal city of Oran. While Camus tells a complete tale of disease, fear, despair, compassion and selfless heroism; the story of lasting significance is told between the lines with insightful observations and thought provoking disserta
Oct 09, 2011 Shovelmonkey1 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sartre
Recommended to Shovelmonkey1 by: 1001 books list
Life is brief... Camus knew this and had the fact proved first hand when he was smooshed in a car accident at the relatively young age of 46. Death is coming people and nothing can stop it. But the question is, do you ignore this fact and live in a kind of blissful fluffy world where it seems nothing can go wrong? Or do you pre-emptively stick your head between your legs and kiss your ass goodbye?

Some have argued that Camus should have stuck to journalism, being a politically aware bad-ass and
Aug 26, 2016 Agnieszka rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, favorites, reviewed

But, you know, I feel more fellowship with the defeated than with saints. Heroism and sanctity don't really appeal to me, I imagine. What interests me is being a man .

In his novel Camus creates a metaphorical image of the world wrestling with evil, whose symbol is the title plague, devastating Oran in 194 .. year ; author deliberately does not specify the exact year , presented events may have occurred in every time .

It could be war.Or earthquake .Or serious illness.Or famine. It could be some
Jim Fonseca
Sep 06, 2015 Jim Fonseca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french-authors

Somehow Camus brings humanism, optimism and the role of love to a depressing story of bubonic plaque in 1940’s Oran, Algeria. First all the rats die and then we go from there. After much bureaucratic bungling and delays, the city is cut off from the outside world by quarantine. A lot of the focus of the story is on those separated by chance from loved ones for several months. There is intrigue as some plot to escape the town. But mainly a dreary perseverance and indifference takes over many in t
peiman-mir5 rezakhani
دوستانِ گرانقدر، داستانی عالی و خواندنی بود... داستانی که بازهم از بیخردی موجوداتِ مذهبی سخن میگوید... نکته قابل توجه در این داستان این بود که «پدر پانلو» کشیش نادان و بی خرد به مانند دیگر مبلغان بیخردِ مذهبی، که همه چیز را به خدا ارتباط میدهند، "طاعون" را عذابی از جانب خدا قلمداد کرده و درمانش را نیز به دست خدا انجام پذیر میداند، غافل از آنکه خدا و ناجی، همان «ژان تارو» بود که بیچاره هم ناجی مردم بود و هم قربانی بود
اگر من جایِ <آلبر کامو> بودم، سرنوشت آن کشیش احمق را جوری در داستان رقم می

The Plague - A brief quiz:

1. You find a dead rat on your front door: what do you do?
a) Ignore it, there are no rats in your clean house.
b) Remark to yourself 'how odd' but carry on as if nothing has happened.
c) Actively seek to work out why such a thing has happened to your house.
d) Note that many such cases of dead rats are happening in your neighbour's home and note that this is no coincidence.

2. A small handful of separate people across town start coming down with a strange disease. What do y
Kristopher Jansma
by Albert Camus

I have been on the hunt for books that might fit with my new Fall semester course on Apocalyptic Literature, and this one seemed like a natural fit. I'd read a bit of Camus before - The Stranger, of course, and The Fall... though I don't remember anything about that one. Camus, like Sartre, falls under the heading in my mind of philosophers who probably shouldn't have gone into creative writing (see entry on Nausea, and also a sentiment soon to be repeated as I try to read Ayn Ran
Jul 11, 2015 Erwin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A poignant account of a town and its people in exile and separation due to the outbreak of the plague. An emotionally trying, but highly satisfying read! It left me breathless at times, following some incredible yet modest heroes, and showing people dealing in different (ir)rational ways with a disease that defies all reason and understanding.
September is slowly coming to an end after showing a cruel face in my corner of the world, reminding us what autumn is truely like. Amidst all those almost daily weather shifts, I got into reading Camus' The Plague and the timing proved to be more than ideal.

The Plague is one of the most frightening books I've ever read. Although a novel, it has the form of a chronicle recorded by an anonymous citizen of the town which is supposedly striken by the plague, and whose identity is revealed in the f
Laura Leaney
Feb 14, 2016 Laura Leaney rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The seaside town of Oran, “merely a large French port on the Algerian coast,” suffers from ugliness. It’s a “smug, placid” provincial place without “pigeons, without any trees or gardens, where you never hear the beat of wings or the rustle of leaves.” The bubonic plague arrives when Dr. Bernard Rieux feels “something soft under his foot.” A dead rat. Then there are more, found in apartments, in stations, in the streets. Moist, fevered foreheads and strange sicknesses appear. The town is hesitan ...more
Jan 04, 2009 Manny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french, life-is-camus
For some reason, I didn't like La Peste nearly as much I had expected. In fact, I found it pretentious and annoying. Maybe I should re-read it... I have a feeling I missed something. My thoughts during the first reading were that he was way too pleased with himself for having been a hero of the Resistance, and that I no longer found it very odd that Sartre had had a major falling out with him which ended with them no longer speaking to each other.

Feb 15, 2016 FeReSHte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: france
تا به حال شهری را متصور شده اید که گرفتار بیماری واگیردار مهلکی باشد و به همین سبب مجبور به قطع ارتباطش با فضای خارج بشود؟ فکر می کنید عکس العمل ساکنین شهر نسبت به هم چه خواهد بود؟ رنج اسارت و هراس دائمی و مرگ اطرافیان را چگونه تاب خواهند آورد؟ می توانید با قدرت خیال، خود را ساکن چنین شهری تصور کنید و واکنش خود را بسنجید؟ فکر می کنید این گرفتاری تا چه حد شما و سایر ساکنان شهر را تغییر خواهد داد؟ شهر قبل از بیماری، با شهر بعد از بیماری یکی خواهد بود؟

آلبرکامو با رمان “طاعون” نه تنها چنین جامعه ای
João Fernandes
Mon premier livre en français!

Onze phrases qui disent tout:

"Les fléaux, en effet, sont une chose commune, mais on crois difficilement aux fléaux lorsqu'ils vous tombent sur la tête. Il y a eu dans le monde autant de pestes que de guerres. Et pourtant pestes et guerres trouvent les gens toujours aussi dépourvus."

"Ils éprouvaient ainsi la souffrance profonde de tous les prisonniers et de tous les exilés, qui est de vivre avec une mémoire qui ne sert à rien."

"Là encore, les douleurs les plus vraies
Elham Ghafarzadeh
توجه کرده اید که نمی توان بیماری های مختلف را در خود جمع کرد؟ فرض کنید که« شما یک بیماری سخت و یا علاج ناپذیر مانند سرطان جدی و یا سل حسابی داشته باشید، هرگز دچار طاعون و یا تیفوس نخواهید شد. غیر ممکن است. حتی مسئله از این حد هم فراتر می رود، زیرا شما هرگز ندیده اید که یک سرطانی در حادثه اتومبیل بمیرد.»
آلبر کامو با قلم اعجاب برانگیز خود از طاعون میگوید اما کدام نوع طاعون؟ او در سراسر داستان انسانها را به چالش میکشد. به عقیدهی من در کل کتاب طاعون، استعارهای است از تمام رفتارهای بشری که با سیری صع
It's difficult to review a book like this. There is no denying the brilliance of Camus as a writer and philosopher. He wrote with conviction, eloquence, and passion. His characters arouse sympathy and compassion as they struggle through tragic circumstances in a meaningless world. Herein, though, lies the problem. He presupposes a life of meaninglessness in a chance existence, and constructs his philosophy around that presupposition. He understands at least some of the consequences of his positi ...more
Aug 10, 2013 Selim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes I dislike the fact that I'm fluent in three languages, French being one of them. On certain occasions speaking and writing (--as well as thinking) in one language can become a huge, mystifying undertaking, making me wish I only spoke one language.

Having not read French books in what feels like an eternity (why would an overworked student getting education in English pursue learning French?), I had forgotten what a delight those could be. In La Peste, Albert Camus provides us readers w
Jul 13, 2016 Carmo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: argélia, nobel, bib-p
A história de A Peste desenrola-se na cidade Argelina de Orão; uma cidade pacata cujos habitantes levam uma vida vulgaríssima e rotineira, sem nada que os distinga ou os torne especiais.
Quando as ruas da cidade são invadidas por bandos de ratos a morrer, não há sobressaltos nem preocupações além do evidente mal-estar perante a visão dos cadáveres. Só quando surgem os primeiros casos de morte em humanos e é lançado o aviso de um possível surto de peste é que a população começa a manifestar os pr
يحيى استانبولي Yahia Istanbuli

كثير من الموتى هنا: ربما عشرون ألف إنسان.. وتسعون ألف جرذ.. والكل سواء..
وأتساءل: من يحاسب الكاتب على ضحاياه؟ هنالك أعداد غفيرة من القتلى يتحتم عدم السكوت عنها!!

في مواجهة الوباء: كل انسان يموت في اليوم عدة مرات، وتفقد العلاقات الإنسانية ألقها مرة وتتهيج وتتضخم مرات..،

في مدينة موبوءة، تصبح رؤية الأطفال وهم يسقطون صرعى اختبارا حقيقيا للإيمان المتبقي في القلوب.. حيث المئات يساقون إلى حتوفهم صاحبين معهم التقيحات والدمامل..

لا مزيد ليقال هنا غير كلمات من رحم الرواية ذاتها: لا تهمني البطولة ولا
Shayantani Das
Dec 19, 2015 Shayantani Das rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a difficult read,because if you thought you could read a book set in a town suffering and suffocating under the pall of pestilence and claustrophobia then half through the book you will be proven wrong. I read this over a long time, feeling extremely uncomfortable and sometimes bored by the incessantly long details of Tarrou's diaries. Somewhere towards the end is when the magic happens. Like Meursault's conversation with the priest in The Stranger and his thoughts on the benign indiffe ...more
Sep 25, 2015 Gearóid rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really excellent!
I think I will read this book numerous times as
I feel there are levels to this story that each
time you read it you learn more and more.

Also after reading this book I am very interested
to read about Albert Camus.He seemed like a very
interesting individual.

David Sarkies
Nov 16, 2015 David Sarkies rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who love this strange existentialist texts
Recommended to David by: James A Sire
Shelves: philosophy
It was a little ironic that the day I finished this book was also the day that Paris suffered at the hands of people who could be considered little more than brutes. While, as I usually do, I wrote this review the day that I finished reading this maginificant book, I felt that maybe it would be a little too early to actually post it (in much the same way that Camus held off for a couple of years after World War II before releasing this book). In a way much of what is suggested in The Plague can ...more
Aug 27, 2013 RandomAnthony rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Robert Smith ruined Camus for decades. Not that I hate The Cure, I like them okay, even more than okay through stretches, but, fuckers, I associated Camus with Cure fans for decades and, in turn, dismissed his work as aimed at the clove-cigarette crowd. This past year I re-read The Stranger and, in need of a book near the library’s closing time, I picked up The Plague. Holy Jesus, The Plague is amazing. The novel disturbed me, and I can’t say I understood everything (I have no goddamn idea what ...more
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هواجس تارو 1 17 Sep 01, 2015 01:31AM  
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Albert Camus (1913-1960) was a representative of non-metropolitan French literature. His origin in Algeria and his experiences there in the thirties were dominating influences in his thought and work. Of semi-proletarian parents, early attached to intellectual circles of strongly revolutionary tendencies, with a deep interest in philosophy (only chance prevented him from pursuing a university care ...more
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“I have no idea what's awaiting me, or what will happen when this all ends. For the moment I know this: there are sick people and they need curing.” 781 likes
“I know that man is capable of great deeds. But if he isn't capable of great emotion, well, he leaves me cold.” 375 likes
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