Jean-Paul Sartre: Huis clos [In Camera]

(3305 words)

“Hell is other people.”  Anyone who has ever heard of Sartre can tell you that he “said” that.  This is a sorry epitaph for a philosopher, novelist and playwright who never “said” anything of the sort: one of his characters in one of his many plays “says” this, and with good reason. For his part, Sartre neither said it nor thought it. He was a clubbable and gregarious man as a writer, never more at ease than in a group of colleagues and disciples (la famille), and his entire, voluminous output in a wide range of genres is focused on exalting human freedom, exploring its ethical implications and moral consequences, and striving towards a pragmatic description of a societal o…

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Citation:
O'Donohoe, Benedict Paul. "Huis clos". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 September 2011
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=11111, accessed 19 September 2014.]