By Neil Foxlee
On eight February 1937 the 23-year-old Albert Camus gave an inaugural lecture for a brand new Maison de l. a. tradition, or group arts centre, in Algiers. Entitled ‘La nouvelle tradition méditerranéenne’ (‘The New Mediterranean Culture’), Camus’s lecture has been interpreted in appreciably alternative ways: whereas a few critics have disregarded it as an incoherent piece of juvenilia, others see it as key to knowing his destiny improvement as a philosopher, no matter if because the first expression of his so-called ‘Mediterranean humanism’ or as an early indication of what's visible as his basically colonial mentality.
These a variety of interpretations are in response to studying the textual content of ‘The New Mediterranean Culture’ in one context, even if that of Camus’s existence and paintings as an entire, of French discourses at the Mediterranean or of colonial Algeria (and French discourses on that country). against this, this learn argues that Camus’s lecture - and in precept any ancient textual content - has to be obvious in a multiplicity of contexts, discursive and another way, if readers are to appreciate accurately what its writer was once doing in writing it. utilizing Camus’s lecture as a case research, the e-book offers a close theoretical and useful justification of this ‘multi-contextualist’ procedure.
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Additional info for Albert Camus's 'The New Mediterranean Culture': A Text and its Contexts (Modern French Identities)
Skinner has shown, for example, that at various points in The Prince, Machiavelli is directly taking issue with Cicero’s De Officiis (On Moral Obligation), which was a locus classicus for humanist advice-books to princes. 40 and 43–46. 28. 51 Towards a Multi-Contextualist Approach 31 Two Critiques of Skinner As its title indicates, the present study adopts a multi-contextualist approach. Before outlining this approach, I shall therefore briefly discuss two critiques of Skinner’s original methodological writings from what is, in effect, a multi-contextualist perspective.
In what he therefore presumably regards as the definitive formulation of this approach to date, Skinner summarizes his case as follows, using the term ‘argumentative context’ to replace the earlier ‘intellectual context’: My contention, in essence, is that we should start by elucidating the meaning, and hence the subject matter of […] utterances […] and then turn to the argumentative context […] to determine how exactly [Skinner presumably means ‘exactly how’] they connect with, or relate to, other utterances concerned with the same subject-matter.
44 chapter 2 cypresses, strings of peppers – Aeschylus and not Euripides22 – Doric Apollos23 and not the Vatican’s copies. It is Spain, its strength and its pessimism, and not the sabre-rattling of Rome – landscapes bursting with sunlight and not the stage-sets where a dictator becomes intoxicated with the sound of his own voice and subjugates crowds. 24 IV. 25 For it is not classical and ordered, it is diffuse and turbulent, like those Arab quarters or those ports of Genoa and Tunisia. This triumphant taste for life, this sense of oppressiveness and boredom, the deserted squares in Spain at midday, the siesta – that is the true Mediterranean and it is the East that it resembles.
Albert Camus's 'The New Mediterranean Culture': A Text and its Contexts (Modern French Identities) by Neil Foxlee