The Existential Fiction of Ayi Kwei Armah, Albert Camus, and Jean-Paul Sartre

The Existential Fiction of Ayi Kwei Armah, Albert Camus, and Jean-Paul Sartre

  • Publish Date: 1996-12-30
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Author: Tommie Jackson

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Existentialism is a philosophy that flourishes in extreme situations. Identified with the period of the French Resistance when Frenchmen were held as political prisoners by the Germans, existentialism, with its call for an uncompromised allegiance to a leftist system of values, served to boost the sagging morale of French political prisoners who had witnessed during the Occupation the subversion of their nation's democratic principles by German totalitarianism. The author finds in post-independence Ghana another example of an extreme situation which has given rise to the existentialist patterns in the novels of the Ghanaian author Ayi Kwei Armah. The identification of a crisis situation in post-independence Ghana, comparable to that created by the German occupation of France during World War II, serves largely as the basis for the examination of the recurrent existentialist patterns. This book explores the existential angst of the artist hero and the necessity of revolt to combat the despair which comes from recognition of his superfluousness. Works by the Ghanaian author Ayi Kwei Armah, as well as by the French authors Albert Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Simone de Beauvoir, are the focus of study.

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