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Paul Mazgaj

Professor and Associate Head, History Department

Paul Mazgaj

The Plague by Albert Camus

Over the years I have used Camus'The Plague a number of times in courses in French and European history. Written shortly after the Second World War, the novel, at one level, is an allegory about the Nazi Occupation of France and the difficult moral choices it imposed upon Frenchmen. However, Camus'classic also speaks to more universal questions about the human condition, allowing students to bridge the gap between a concrete historical situation and larger human concerns about choice and freedom in a world of dissolving certainties.