Carroll, David. Albert Camus the Algerian: Colonialism, Terrorism, Justice. New York: Columbia University Press, 2007. Pp. 237. David Carroll's new book on Camus is an important contribution not only to Camus studies but to contemporary reflections on postcolonial theory. The book is a model of scholarship and erudition, and it is also the record of a personal change in point of view. After reading the attacks on Camus's politics that branded him a "colonialist sympathizer" (in their different ways, Albert Memmi, Conor Cruise O'Brien, and Edward Said enact this form of criticism in their respective studies), Carroll set out to re-read Camus and to discover for himself the degree to which these attacks and criticisms could be called justified, the degree to which they were grounded in a serious and nuanced reading of Camus's writings both the journalistic essays and the fictions that deal primarily with Algeria. Not the least of the many qualities displayed in Albert Camus the Algerian is the intellectual honesty of its author. Whereas Carroll demonstrates, convincingly as far as I am concerned, that O'Brien and Said were off the mark in their attacks (and essentially, that they did not read Camus), his
SubStance – University of Wisconsin Press
Published: Mar 10, 2008
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