• Bookshop: Librairie Feu Follet (France)
  • ILAB-LILA Member
  • Publishing year: 1936
  • Publisher: Pour les amis du théâtre du travail
  • Subjects: History
  • Size: 14x19,5cm
  • Shipment weight: 750 g
  • Binding: broché
  • Edition: 1
  • Publishing place: Alger

Bibliographic details

- Pour les amis du théâtre du travail, Alger 1936, 14x19,5cm, broché. - Pour les amis du théâtre du travail, Algiers 1936, 14x19,5 cm, broché The very rare first edition of this four-act play, the first work that Camus published together with his company, the Théâtre du Travail, Jeanne-Paule Sicard, Bourgeois and Poignant. A very good copy of this apparently humble but nonetheless foundational work of all of Camus' oeuvre. This copy is in a half black morocco chemise over paper boards by Boichot, with a slipcase edged in black morocco to match. Much more than a simple youthful collaboration, Révolte dans les Asturies [Revolt in Asturias] is really the first work by Albert Camus, humanist writer, politically engaged playwright, philosopher of the absurd, political rebel and activist. No other first literary attempt has the political and poetic power of a writer called upon to mark his century through his writings and intellectual insight. Almost entirely written by Camus (only the radio texts, the interrogation in Act IV, and the scene with the council of ministers are not by him), this ostensibly collective work was primarily so due to the young Camus' desire for solidarity and community with his fellows. Camus, from the foreword onwards plays down his evident paternity of the work: "an attempt at co-creation, let us say. It's true. Its only value lies in that." This passion for co-operative creation that Camus found in football and which he tried to find also in the theatre, constitutes a fundamental aspect of the thinking of the author of The Plague and The First Man. Revolt in Asturias, this "attempt at co-creation" published by "E.C. for the friends of the Théâtre du Travail" bears, even on the cover, Camus' ideal of a united society, not individualist and yet capable of struggle and solidarity. And when Fréminville was shocked by the neat but transparent anonymity of this work of which "it is enough to read ten lines to recognize the style [of Camus]", the latter replied: "We should maybe think about the superiority of the work to the workman." There were thus no names printed on the work itself, and even the publisher resorted to using two initials, which some jokingly referred to as: "Éditions Camus". In fact, behind the initials E.C. was a 21 year-old young man, as yet unknown, Edmond Charlot, a schoolfriend of Camus'. Like Camus, he owed his vocation to Jean Grenier and like Camus, he began his career in publishing with this anonymous work. Without premises or money, he succeeded in having it printed by a sympathetic printer, Emmanuel Andréo, in 500 fragile booklets, all dispersed within two weeks, but very few of which stood up to the violent buffeting of the century. This first collaboration was to mark the beginning of one of the most faithful publishing friendships between Camus and his Algerian publisher, who would go on to publish a few months later the first personal work by his friend, Betwixt and Between, and would later become the indispensable Mediterranean link for the writer, exiled far from his native land. This key meeting could very well not have taken place. Revolt in Asturias, initially conceived as a "canvas [on which] the actors will be invited to the manner of the Commedia dell'Arte," (Albert Camus by Olivier Todd) was not intended to be printed, as Camus points out in his foreword: "The theatre is not written down, or if it is it's simply a stopgap." Its publication, embarked upon after a ban on staging the play by the extreme-right wing Algerian authorities, was thus a strong political gesture that echoed the themes of the piece itself. Inspired by the violent repression in Spain against miners the year before, which had claimed almost 2,000 lives, the subject chosen by Camus is in effect an early proof of his active engagement in the struggle for freedom. He would again show the same courage in his resistant writings, Combat and Letter to a German Friend, as well as his co

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