28 October 2011

The Existentialists and happiness

One day Camus had said: "Happiness exists, and it's important; why refuse it? You don't make other people's unhappiness any worse by accepting it; it even helps you to fight for them. Yes," he had concluded, "I find it sad the way everyone seems to be ashamed of feeling happy nowadays." I agreed with him completely.

Simone de Beauvoir. Force of Circumstance. Vol. 1: After the War. Trans. Richard Howard. New York: Harper & Row, 1977. Originally published as La Force des choses, Paris: Gallimard, 1963. 162.

I apologize for the translation: I acquired my copies of Beauvoir's biographies in my middle teens, before I learned French.

At any rate: if even the existentialists believe in being happy, why in the world should the rest of us suffer? It is the weekend, so we will sing.

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