CREATE DANGEROUSLY CAMUS PDF

Every publication is a deliberate act, and that act makes us vulnerable to the passions of a century that forgives nothing. These are dangerous times to create art. Which is also to say, these are the best times to create art. But what makes these times dangerous anyway?

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Every publication is a deliberate act, and that act makes us vulnerable to the passions of a century that forgives nothing. These are dangerous times to create art. Which is also to say, these are the best times to create art. But what makes these times dangerous anyway?

After all, Camus gave his speech only a decade after WWII when fascism had almost conquered Europe, and the Soviet Empire was just beginning its rule over half the continent that would last the next half a century. The danger one experiences as an artist in the West pales in comparison to what an artist might experience in a country like Iran or China. After all, opprobrium on social media is hardly comparable to the punishment faced by dissidents living in a theocracy or dictatorship.

And yet—whether or not the times are really that dangerous, they certainly feel that way for anyone who wishes to express themselves freely. In the contemporary West, you are highly unlikely to be jailed or to lose your life for making art, but you might lose your career or your reputation or both. We have all read the articles by now. The attempts to erase artists whether they be artists of the present or the artists of the past.

Comedians are denounced for their routines. Actors are denounced for the parts they accept. Such attacks, of course, are nothing new. No, free artists cannot enjoy comfort any more than free people can. Free artists are those who, with great difficulty, create order themselves…Perhaps there is no peace for an artist other than the peace found in the heat of combat.

Which is not to say its opposite always creates meaningful art either. For a value, or a virtue, to take root in any society, we must not lie about it, which means we must pay for it, at every possible moment. These are tense times and in the long run that will only benefit art. It is hard to imagine the countercultural revolutions of the sixties without the rigidity of the fifties. Just like it is hard to imagine the Renaissance without the Inquisition.

Or punk without disco. For Camus, great art develops between the two chasms of frivolity and propaganda, where every step forward is a dangerous one. But such solemn stupidities could only be put forward because for one hundred years, consumer society made an exclusive and unilateral use of freedom, considering it a right rather than an obligation and not fearing to use the principle of freedom to justify actual oppression—and as often as possible.

From that point onward, is it truly surprising that such a society wished art to be not an instrument of liberation, but rather an exercise of little importance, simple entertainment? When justice exists, in a future that is still unknown, art will be reborn… Today, pressure may be put on artists to toe the line ideologically in their art at the risk of social and career suicide.

It can discourage artists from exploring taboo subjects and become one of the biggest threats to their freedom. For myself, I must state once more that I am not of this kind. I have never been able to renounce the light, the pleasure of being, and the freedom in which I grew up. But although this nostalgia explains many of my errors and my faults, it has doubtless helped me toward a better understanding of my craft.

But perhaps the biggest struggle artists face is the one within. Is an art that seeks to explore universal truths about humanity just a luxury if it is not serving the moment in the name of social justice?

On the other hand, it might also stir up the necessary tension to push them to create dangerously: And so, perhaps, if we listen closely amid the din of empires and nations, we might hear the faint sound of beating wings, the sweet stirrings of life and hope. Some will say that hope is carried by a nation, others by a person. But I believe quite the reverse: hope is awakened, given life, sustained, by the millions of individuals whose deeds and actions every day break down borders and refute the worst moments in history, to allow the truth—which is always danger—to shine brightly, even if only fleetingly, the truth, which every individual builds for us all, created out of suffering and joy.

It is no surprise to say that frivolous art and social realism are also the two most common types of art today. These types of art are the safest, after all, and so are most often pushed and promoted by the mainstream. But as Camus suggests, if we listen closely, we just might hear the stirrings of the next William Shakespeare—or the next Sex Pistols.

Not to mention, the greatest reward.

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Create Dangerously

Albert Camus was a French philosopher, author and journalist, famous for his novel The Stranger which reflected some of his absurdism views. He has had several novels published as well as short stories, nonfiction books, plays and essays. This collection of speeches that discuss art, liberty and responsibility in post-war Europe are exquisitely articulated and provokes plenty of thinking and debating. Camus discusses what is in the mind of creators, like artists and writers, and their approach to conveying their work, the reason for why they create, and the position it sits in terms of liberty. He moves on from this point in another essay where he speaks about the true meaning of freedom, and the concept that we are, and are not free. To be honest I struggled with this collection of speeches from Camus. My eyes glazed over plenty sentences which seemed to go on forever, and talk endlessly about a certain meaning or concept.

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Create Dangerously: Albert Camus and the Power and Responsibility of the Artist

Albert Camus Date: Born in Algeria in , Albert Camus published The Stranger-- now one of the most widely read novels of this century-- in Celebrated in intellectual circles, Camus was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in On January 4, , he was killed in a car accident. Albert Camus was born in Algeria in His childhood was poor, although not unhappy. He went to Paris, where he worked on the newspaper Paris Soir before returning to Algeria. His play, Caligula, appeared in

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