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Aesthetics in Sartre and Camus. The Challenge of Freedom

Translated by Catherine Atkinson


Heiner Wittmann

Aesthetics in Sartre and Camus examines the ideas on aesthetics expressed in the oeuvres of the two French authors. The dispute that arose following the publication of Camus’ L’homme révolté and Sartre’s criticism of Camus’ book culminated in the break up of their friendship in 1952, thereby underlining the differences in the authors’ thinking. But by observing the function and significance of art and freedom in their works, fundamental correspondences and areas of agreement are revealed in Sartre’s and Camus’ writings and are analysed in the present study.
The Author: Heiner Wittmann, born in 1955, studied Romance Studies, History and Politics in Paris (Paris III – Sorbonne-Nouvelle and Institut d’Études Politiques) and Bonn. After taking a teacher training degree, he was awarded a doctoral degree at Bonn University in 1987 for his work on the aesthetics in the oeuvre of Jean-Paul Sartre. Between 1996 and 2002 he taught at the Institut für Linguistik/Romanistik at Stuttgart University. In 2002 he published Albert Camus. Kunst und Moral. Wittmann has held numerous lectures in Germany and abroad. Since 1989 he has worked for various publishing companies within the Klett Group (Stuttgart). His website is In recognition of his contributions to French culture, on 8th February 2012 the author has been nominated Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Palmes Académiques by the French Prime Minister.