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Sartre dealt with existentialist themes in his 1938 novel and the short stories in his 1939 collection , and had published his treatise on existentialism, , in 1943, but it was in the two years following the liberation of Paris from the German occupying forces that he and his close associates—Camus, Simone de Beauvoir, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, and others—became internationally famous as the leading figures of a movement known as existentialism. In a very short period of time, Camus and Sartre in particular became the leading public intellectuals of post-war France, achieving by the end of 1945 "a fame that reached across all audiences." Camus was an editor of the most popular leftist (former ) newspaper ; Sartre launched his journal of leftist thought, , and two weeks later gave the widely reported lecture on existentialism and to a packed meeting of the Club Maintenant. Beauvoir wrote that "not a week passed without the newspapers discussing us"; existentialism became "the first media craze of the postwar era."

Following the , existentialism became a well-known and significant philosophical and cultural movement, mainly through the public prominence of two French writers, and , who wrote best-selling novels, plays and widely read journalism as well as theoretical texts. These years also saw the growing reputation of Heidegger's book outside Germany.

Jaspers, a professor at the University of , was acquainted with , who held a professorship at before acceding to Husserl's chair at in 1928. They held many philosophical discussions, but later became estranged over Heidegger's support of (Nazism). They shared an admiration for Kierkegaard, and in the 1930s, Heidegger lectured extensively on Nietzsche. Nevertheless, the extent to which Heidegger should be considered an existentialist is debatable. In he presented a method of rooting philosophical explanations in human existence () to be analysed in terms of existential categories (); and this has led many commentators to treat him as an important figure in the existentialist movement.

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In a final twist, Clamence asserts that his acid self-portrait is also a mirror for his contemporaries. Hence his confession is also an accusation—not only of his nameless companion (who serves as the mute auditor for his monologue) but ultimately of the hypocrite lecteur as well.

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As a cultural movement, existentialism belongs to the past. As aphilosophical inquiry that introduced a new norm, authenticity, forunderstanding what it means to be human—a norm tied to adistinctive, post-Cartesian concept of the self as practical, embodied,being-in-the-world—existentialism has continued to play animportant role in contemporary thought in both the continental andanalytic traditions. The Society for Phenomenology and ExistentialPhilosophy, as well as societies devoted to Heidegger, Sartre,Merleau-Ponty, Jaspers, Beauvoir, and other existential philosophers,provide a forum for ongoing work—both of a historical,scholarly nature and of more systematic focus—that derives fromclassical existentialism, often bringing it into confrontation withmore recent movements such as structuralism, deconstruction,hermeneutics, and feminism. In the area of gender studies Judith Butler(1990) draws importantly on existential sources, as does Lewis Gordon(1995) in the area of race theory (see also Bernasconi 2003). Matthew Ratcliffe (2008) develops an existential approach to psychopathology.

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The intention of this paper has been twofold: to bring phenomenology into the general debate on theories of information behaviour, and to emphasise the distinction between methodology and method. Over recent years more attention has been devoted to research methods than to the underlying methodological principles of different research frameworks. I believe that Schutz's attempts to create a phenomenological sociology provide us with a useful framework to guide research into people's information behaviour and, thereby, to guide us to the choice of appropriate methods.

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Existentialism is often defined as a philosophical movement or tendency, emphasizing individual existence, freedom and choice. As a result of the diversity of positions associated with this term it is impossible to define precisely. There are, however, basic themes common in existentialist beliefs. As is evident through the root of the word, exist, there is a stress on definite individual existence and freedom of choice. Developed between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, this ideology influenced literature greatly. A prime example of the incorporation of certain aspects of existentialism is witnessed in Albert Camus's The Stranger. The use of existentialism within his work assists in the development of his characters; it determines how they will act and respond to their surroundings. The aforementioned actions are often unique due to the influence of existentialism. Meursault is the major character in The Stranger. He is considered the personification of existentialism, the existential hero if you will.


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At first blush, however, the book’s subject seems to have moreof a historical theme than a philosophical one. “Thepurpose of this essay is … to face the reality of the present,which is logical crime, and to examine meticulously the arguments bywhich it is justified; it is an attempt to understand the times inwhich we live. One might think that a period which, in a space offifty years, uproots, enslaves, or kills seventy million human beingsshould be condemned out of hand. But its culpability must stillbe understood” (R, 3).

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