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Huis clos, suivi de Les mouches

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  9,666 ratings  ·  235 reviews
Mass Market Paperback, 247 pages
Published December 18th 2000 by Folio (first published 1946)
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Average rating 4.07  · 
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 ·  9,666 ratings  ·  235 reviews


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Lisa
Jun 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, drama, nobels
The Nobel Prize 1964 goes to the perfect description of Hell!

And Sartre, clever and free, refuses to accept the honour, knowing full well the implications of binding oneself to the hellish feeling of owing something to an institution, however honorable it may seem. A truly independent spirit who knew everything of the prisons human beings carry with them wherever they go: their minds full of desire for the things that are out of reach.

The only laureate ever to decline the prize out of convicti
...more
Manny
Hell is other people. It's a terrific piece of theatre. Though every time I read this play - I have unfortunately never seen it performed - it occurs to me that, logically, heaven should be other people too, and that Sartre is perhaps taking an unjustifiably gloomy view.

There is an incident in Huis Clos where one of the characters offers another one her eyes to use as a mirror. (There are no mirrors in Hell). I have wondered several times whether the Velvet Underground's track "I'll be your mir
...more
Michael Finocchiaro
Sartre was one complex individual. These two plays are not intended to make you smile or feel comfortable - but they will challenge your sense of being and existence and are extremely well-written. For understanding the French existentialists in the mid-20th century, these are unavoidable plays and entertaining to read even if they do not necessarily have happy endings.
Emily
Jun 16, 2011 added it
Shelves: read-in-2011
On Les mouches

Once, when I was enrolled in a Victorian Literature class in college, reading novel after essay after poem that grieved deeply over the religious upheaval brought on by the scientific breakthroughs of Charles Darwin and others, I asked my professor whether there weren't any 19th-century authors who felt liberated, rather than bereft, by these developments. As a profoundly a-religious person myself, I can try to imagine myself into the position of Arnold, Tennyson, Ruskin, Carlyle a
...more
Tom
Sep 30, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: men, plays, french, france
'Huis Clos' represents something I do not like. In fact, I detest the message that Sartre is conveying in his rather famous play. It is this play that has spawned one of the most misunderstood quotes in literary history, c'est-à-dire "L'enfer, c'est les autres." What we are given by Sartre, is a room that houses three people; the rather tense Garcin, the empty-headed Estelle and Inès, one of the most ridiculously stereotypical lesbian characters I have ever encountered. (Seriously though. It has ...more
Noah Goats
Jan 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
In Huis clos Sartre tells the story of three people who die and are sent to hell. For these people, hell consists of a room in which they are to spend eternity together. Sartre uses the play to explore the idea that we perceive ourselves though the eyes of others and can be tortured by their perceptions. It's a grim little piece, most famous for the line, "hell is other people," which is a sort of summary of the whole thing.

I didn't read Les Mouches, the second play included in this book.
Enora
Nov 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the rare books where, upon finishing, I said to myself: "I want to read it again!". The two plays absolutely captivated me, and I was surprised by how simple Sartre's language is in French.

Huis Clos is an innovative sci-fi plot written in the 40's, focusing on the drama of interpersonal relationships. What would happen if time, sleep, basic needs were no longer a thing, and the only variant and ineluctable truth was the company of others?

Les Mouches re-explores the classic Greek
...more
Lesley
Jun 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing
If you know nothing about Sartre and want to get a quick peek into his philosophy, Huis Clos (No Exit) is an accessible start. Two women and a man are escorted to a large room which they will share for eternity. Within minutes, it's clear why these three have been thrown together; each has exactly the personality and character flaws designed to drive the other two mad. As we learn about the blighted lives the three have lived and watch them squabble and torment each other, we understand the trut ...more
Christine
Aug 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: french
Regarding "Huis clos": this is the one-act play that contains the infamous "hell is other people" quote. Sartre claimed to have written it as a comedy. I can see why directors have had such a difficult time doing his "comedic" vision justice. In a way, it DOES read like a comedy. As a blurb, anyway: a journalist, a postal worker, and a socialite walk into a room... It's a fun play to read but maybe a little more grim than Sartre intended. Or maybe he had a weird sense of humour. Either way, I wi ...more
Chris Shank
Jun 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The existentialist philosopher, Jean Paul Satre, was a man of letters, writing plays, novels, and screenplays, and of course, philosophy. He was a lot of things in his time, including a political activist (Marxist), and a literary critic. Everything I’ve read of his is supremely intelligent and thoroughly thought out, and it all makes me sense that he really has something valuable to say. And these couple plays only encouraged me to read more from Sartre in the future. They are short vignettes e ...more
Angela
May 17, 2018 marked it as paused
Shelves: français, for-class
Paused until I find a copy, because we’re not reading it in class anymore.
Sam Purnell
Apr 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Les Mouches is okay, not the best Sartre play I’ve ever read but Huis Clos is spectacular! A great read, and a great conclusion
S Moss
Apr 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Hell Is Other People

This short play provides a good introduction to some of Sartre’s key ideas about existence and human relationships. Admittedly, the characters are the extremes a good melodrama should have, so the audience can safely distance itself from their reality, while at the same time being fascinated by their behavior and stories. Joseph Garcin, known by his last name in the play, Inez Serrano and Estelle Rigaut, the women known by their first names, are the three people discovered tr
...more
Marc
Oct 11, 2013 rated it liked it
"Huis Clos" is theater reduced to its essence: three people locked in a room. The informative method is masterly: the reader initially is completely lost, but after a while he gets to know what is going on with the characters (they are dead). Then the room becomes a chemistry experiment: the characters interacts and that, consistent with Sartre's human vision, ends badly. Beautiful illustration of "L'enfer c'est les autres". But you still end up feeling unsatisfied at the end: there was more to ...more
Screaming Into the Void About Books
Puisque je l'ai lu en français, je devrais le critiquer aussi en français, non? Hahahaha, no thanks. My keyboard shortcuts for all those accent markers are super rusty. I took French all through high school and college (even had a minor in French), so I got relatively comfortable reading in French, but that was a long time ago. I recently had a coworker of mine show interest in learning French, and I agreed to study with her. I can't believe I ever stopped actively learning French! It's such an ...more
Carolina Morales
"L'Enfer, C'est les autres."

What is Hell to you?

The description of Hell presented by Existencialist philosopher Jean-Paul Sarte is the most accurate I have ever seen so far. Three despictable people forever locked inside a room, getting on each other's nerves, desiring unattainable goals. Simple, neat and efficient - nothing of the glory of John Milton, no clichées of torture chambers and still no way out of the crescendo teethclenching boredom & tension.

If Sartre would ask for my personal vers
...more
Nathan Albright
Feb 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: challenge2017
I first became familiar with the writings and thinking of Sartre [1] as a high school student doing a dramatic reading of the part of Garcin in No Exit. I happened to find this small volume, of which both plays I had already read and been familiar with, while on a trip to Powell's before a recent concert, and once I got around to reading it it did not take me long to finish. My interest in this collection was primarily in the first play, which has long had a fairly strong influence in my own wri ...more
Max
Jul 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theatre
Complementing his philosophical magnum opus Being and Nothingness, published in the same year, Huis clos (No Exit) explores some of the most fundamental philosophical themes of Sartre's, most notably how we relate to others. As the famous quote shows, Sartre is pessimistic: we come to know the Other in a conflictual way, and this encroachment on our freedom is a very difficult thing to live with.

As his colourful examples from his philosophical works demonstrate, he is incredibly skillful at ill
...more
S'hi
Jan 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
As a preliminary to reading Sartre's Les Mouches (The Flies), I reaad Sophocles Electra and this was my response:

Although there are four plays in this book I didn’t get much out of the first one as I began it, so jumped across and just decided to read Electra.

I found this very interesting for the use of deception to give oneself an advantage about the situation one is entering before admitting one’s alliance with another. But this is an example given by the gods in some plays, just as it is wit
...more
David Meditationseed
May 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
To what extent do we remain authentic in the different scenarios in which we live? For example: are we ourselves with our opinions and attitudes when we are in the family, at work or between friends? Or do we really act differently, because of the environment we are in, to avoid conflicts or because of our own fear of losing something?

Maybe because we are afraid or ashamed of what other people might think about ourselves?

"Huis clos, suivi de Les mouches" deals that we always build characters f
...more
J. Alfred
No Exit is very famous, and probably with good reason. The famous-with-good-reason phrase "Hell is other people" comes from it, and it makes quite a lot of sense in context (if not in, you know, real life or Christian psychology-- what's that, Hopkins? "God's most deep decree/ Bitter would have me taste. My taste was me").
The Flies is a little much. It's a retelling of the Orestiad, but without grace (i.e. Eliot) or justice (i.e. Aeschylus). All it's got to offer is Freedom, which apparently me
...more
E L K Y
Dec 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: drama
Its really 3,5, a system I wish Goodreads adapted. What this show you is a closer look at the lives, ideals and thoughts of humans on a general level, the good and the bad. The style of plays does not meet the style I enjoy which is why I had harder times with Sartre's plays but they are nonetheless important and hold very important philosophical value, must have even more in Europe some century ago.
Alessa
Oct 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I read this book in my college French class. It was very clever and interesting read. Let's be honest, a personal hell can definitely be being trapped in a room with people and no escape. Sartre is a creative writer and I didn't feel like I was reading a book from the mid-1900s. If you are an Intermediate French speaker, this is a great book to pick up to practice your reading skills.
Chloé
Feb 26, 2018 rated it liked it
I don’t get why people think this is great lmao I mean I didn’t think it was terrible but I just don’t get it. The characters are hypocrites and they constantly contradict themselves. I’m not a fan. I had to read this for school so I mean I already didn’t have a high opinion of it.
Rachel
Aug 08, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: french
Liked it a lot in college, can't read it any more. :(
Kim
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"hell is other people"
JEAN-PAUL-SARTER
Hugo Castillo
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This ending perfectly encapsulates the humor I often find in existentialism. Also, first book I've read in French in a while, shouts to retaining language skills.
BellaOpium
Jun 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A true masterpiece
I highly recommend it
Nawal
Mar 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Great book to read on a weekend!
K.T.
Apr 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Reread this classic from my French lit class cause there’s no time like a pandemic to be reminded “l’enfer c’est les autres”.
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Jean-Paul Charles Aymard Sartre, normally known simply as Jean-Paul Sartre, was a French existentialist philosopher and pioneer, dramatist and screenwriter, novelist and critic. He was a leading figure in 20th century French philosophy.

He declined the award of the 1964 Nobel Prize in Literature "for his work which, rich in ideas and filled with the spirit of freedom and the quest for truth, has ex
...more

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