Camus as a Positivistic Proponent of Freedom
Griffith Robert “Griff” Littlehale is a digital artist who has a portfolio that ranges from urban scenes to logos and designs that promote local events. With an interest in literature and philosophy, Griffith Littlehale is particularly drawn to 20th century thinkers such as Jacques Ranciere and Albert Camus.
Profoundly affected by the experiences of World War II, the French-Algerian philosopher Camus took a firm stance against totalitarianism. In the late 1940s, socialism found receptive ears in Europe as an alternative to the capitalist forces that many believed had led to fascism. Camus recognized that, rather than bringing about greater freedom, socialism involved a suppression of conflicting views, under an ideology of the end justifying the means.
Camus, while turning away from there being any predetermined, intrinsic meaning to life, did not sink to nihilism. Rather, he felt that meaning in life must be self-created, in ways that led to personal well-being and happiness. He took a positivistic stance in viewing Europe as an intellectual battlefield, one in which people could transcend their previous allegiances and find a shared commonalty in debate and the creation of meaningful values. His late 1950s concept of a continent that embraced unity within a diverse and non-ideological framework was one that anticipated the European Union. He ultimately even went a step further in calling for a “United States of the World.”