A true classic does not in the first range of light over the time it was written in. Then it is a tidsdokument, not a classic.

Classic is classic in the power of the to seem relevant in the situation the reader at any time is inside.

at the same time, there is something puzzling by every great literary work, which is not immediately allow themselves to understand without making further investigation in the time the artwork arose.

Much recognizable

The one who spends the easter of 2020 together with “the Plague”, will find much that is recognizable. For only weeks ago would this book seemed like a visit to an alien planet. The meeting with the trapped in the shut-down small town of Oran sometime in the 1940s, would have behaved himself like a visit in a distant past. It is not so anymore.

It is no longer oseaner between us and those who are trapped in the pestrammede village on the coast of Algeria.

the Rats in the streets and oppganger

There are many doctors, also in reality, which is made of the same material and with the same instincts that Dr. Rieux. He is this the course of history entirely, and to tell.

the Disease in the book, the precursor different than the virus we have become so well acquainted with now. It ticking it is not the disturbing news bulletins from far-flung Wuhan. The crisis appears in the form of dead rats in the streets and stairways.

“Many a nattevandrer allowed to feel the soft mass of a fresh carcass underneath the foot on the sidewalk,” writes Camus in Christine Amadous new translation. It flows effortlessly, even subtly of the place. Purely linguistic could novel from 1947 just as easily have been written yesterday.

Diseases in the spring

Also in the “Plague” spread the disease, first in the spring. As in reality, we follow the development almost from day to day. The very human hang to belittle and neglect occurs also here. Also in fiksjonen one thinks that this kind of epidemics was something that was a past stage in our part of the world. Like many of us, is Dr. Rieux also pesthistoriker.

He associates to “the thirty great pestene in the history of races” in earlier times in London, Constantinople, and Canton.

A drama in five acts

Albert Camus structure his narrative in the same way as you unscrewed together French drama in the 1700s. The book, which Camus used five years to write, is divided into five acts. In the first act meetings Rieux caretaker, who comes running with their hands full of dead rats. We are presented to the dramaets key people who will react very differently to what must soon happen.

the Journalist Rambert has come to provinsbyen from Paris to write about how the arabs have it. He is just so selfish and vain that we as journalists often are. He had lived among us here and now, he had taken the car to the cabin for longer. But Rambert to change. For there are a kime of greatness in him, who shall come to the sight when it really matters.

Albert Camus spent five years to write the Plague. Here posing him after he was awarded the Nobel literature prize in 1957.

Photo: Stf / AFP Great Grand

another, who must be said to belong to the immortal romanfigurene in the european etterkrigslitteratur (no less), is rådhusfunksjonæren Joseph Grand.

Author Jan Kjærstad pulled out the Grand in a feature article in VG recently. It was certainly easy for a writer to identify with this man, who sits and files on the same hopeless sentence night after night. But we shall not remember the Grand only for his evinnelige filing on the same statement about amasonen “like red on a magnificent fuks through the Boulogneskogens thriving avenues”.

We should also remember him because he is the one who lacks the ability to cut through whether it is in your love life or on the job. For a long time, he writes a letter to his superiors, which is never sent. Therefore he remains as the poorly paid and at the bottom of the hierarchy. Not to his wife he finds the right words.

It must, in other words an earthquake to get this man out of the blindgaten he finds himself in. Or a plague.

the Game in the scenes between medical expertise and political power tilspisser him as we approach the end of the novel’s first act. The older legekollegaen Castel come by, and call the disease by its proper name.

Becomes impossible to ignore,

We are in a meeting in helsekommisjonen, where the anxious politicians warn against the spreading unnecessary fear in the population. A serum should come from kolonihovedstaden Paris, but lets wait on themselves, and do not work as hoped. Plague develops from byllepest to lungepest. At a time are the death toll been so high that it is not possible for any political leadership to ignore.

TESTING: the Image is from testing for koronavirus in 2020. Researchers is now examining whether several drugs can increase the chances for survival korona.

Photo: Anders Fehn / NRK

“From then on we can say that the plague affected all of us,” writes Camus.

Dommedagsprekener in the church

Death stares of the city’s population in hvitøyet. Dødsbevisstheten leads to people discover the church and religion again. They stimler together to hear jesuittpateren Paneloux tell them that the plague is god’s judgment, foretold in The old testament.

Against this view is Dr. Rieux for the belief in the slumpaktige. Pestbekjempelsen is a way to create meaning in the absurd, that a human life is.

the Sky of your existence, as it turns out that both the believers and non-believers may eventually be collected about, is to sacrifice himself unconditionally for the human community. Therefore, both the doctor and the priest go together in a sanitetskorps with the objective to save as many people as possible forward to saving the serum comes.

Enigmatic people

in the Midst of all that recognizable pop it up, people, and events that are more enigmatic. The function really has the young neighbor Tarrou? How are we to understand the selvmordsforsøket to the mysterious smugleren Gottard? What is the role of the tungpustede astmatikeren that have two pots of peas standing on the boil at any time?

A rare kvinneportrett appears among all mannsrollene. It’s about Dr. Riuexs mother. “Are you afraid mom?”, ask the doctor. “At my age fear you do not great”, she says.

Dr. Rieuxs mother reminds me of the ones I know of high risk, which at the moment seems to deal with the situation with dignity and calm.

When the disease disappears

in the Midst of all the drama takes Camus also found time to go to the opera. A operakompani came to town. and stranded there when the city gates were closed. They are playing the “Orfeus and Euridike” every night until hovedrolleinnehaveren suddenly falls on the stage. The public’s quiet retreat from the auditorium bears witness to how quickly people adapt to a situation where death and suffering suddenly become a visible, everyday phenomenon.

And then blowing it over. Pestsykdommen pulls back. When the wave pulls back, there is much that is changed.

Dancing in the streets reminiscent of the images we’ve seen from Norway when peace came in 1945. All the pain and ambivalence will not appear on the images. But in the really big novels also have these feelings of loneliness and separation their natural place in the group picture.

Read in the new light

Until a few weeks ago had a mention of this novel probably in a greater degree understood the novel as an allegory. The so-called “Resistance reading”, which sees the Plague as an image of the nazi advancing in Europe, has plenty of support in the text.

When a rådhusansatt get “the brilliant idea” to build on the trams in the city to carry pestens victims directly to the forbrenningsovnene, it’s hard not to think that it is the trains carrying jews to Aushwitz Camus was really talking about.

But right now, it is not where we are.

At the moment is “the Plague” is neither an abstraction nor very absurd. We are still unable to see how this virus-the story to end. How far are we really in the course? We are in the first or maybe the second act?

On the way out of a radio studio I meet a colleague, who asks me what I’m left with after reading the Plague by Albert Camus. Have I learned anything? Has it been helpful? I don’t know. It clearly occurs, is something of the same that can be experienced in the face of a well-executed, but perhaps the terrifying subject in a painting or in a melancholic piece of music.

the Artwork pluck you out of the situation you are in and offer a form of salvation, or, in any case, rest in the situation at any time, you should be in.

the Disease has been in the world at all times. On the we respond to human. Camus allows us to realize this. That is the art of triumph.

Korona – About koronapandemien (corona), and covid-19 in 2020

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