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Caligula and Three Other Plays Mass Market Paperback – February 12, 1962

ISBN-13: 978-0394702070 ISBN-10: 0394702077

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 302 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage (February 12, 1962)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0394702077
  • ISBN-13: 978-0394702070
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 4.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,383 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By C. B Collins Jr. TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 28, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Camus does an excellent job of contrasting individual insanity and collective insanity in his play Caligula. Basically, Caligula is insane. He is a despot who holds the lives of his subjects in his hands. At times, for very arbitrary reasons, he kills or executes someone from his court. This seems arbitrary and frightenging. Yet, Caligula is contrasted against sane military officers who engage in terrible acts of war where thousands upon thousands of civilians and soldiers are killed. So who is insane? Is it the dictator who might execute someone in his court for very trivial reasons or is it the rational military general who kills thousands and thousands of persons in rational and supposedly justified warfare? Camus reveals to the careful reader that societal evil is far more dangerous than individual evil. This is a wonderful thoughtful classic play that demonstrates Camus' ability to bring complex concepts to dramatic life.

The Misunderstanding, another play in this volume, is another complex drama. An innkeeper and her old maid daughter kills guests of the inn when they are able to discern that the guest's death can not be tracked. They rob the guests which supplements their income. They long for the return of the beloved son of the innkeeper who has been gone for years and years without contact. As you might expect, the son returns to the inn and is murdered by his mother and sister. The deed is revealed when his wife arrives and finds him missing. Camus here deals with the concept of objectification of others so that violence may be done to them without remorse. When the innkeeper and her daughter find they have murdered the long lost son, they are beside themselves with grief.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Dustin on July 4, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The cover of Caligula shows an abstract horse bucking, and that is just what Caligula does to us. It knocks us off our high-horse by bringing us face-to-face with death. Only (and I do not choose that word lightly) a true understanding of death can put lives in perspective. Sure Caligula is a despot who could have the life of any of his subjects, but the fact-of-the-matter is that our lives can end at any second. Caligula teaches us not to take life for granted, which is something that is all to easily done in this era. This theme also exists in State of Seige. The other two plays, The Misunderstanding, and The Just Assasins are more subtle, but they also deal with idea that we take petty concerns and ideas too seriously, and fail to look and the big picture. I should also add that the language and passion of the plays are exceptional.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Samantha on April 17, 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
We read Caligula for my World lit 2 class. It was an excellent play that did a great job at illustrating the existentialist philosophy of Camus.
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