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"L'Enfer, c'est les autres"

Related : 1944 - Jean-Paul Sartre - people - hell - other

"L'Enfer, c'est les autres" (English: "Hell is other people") is a phrase first uttered in Jean-Paul Sartre's 1944 play No Exit and which has since then entered semi-popular culture. [Aug 2006]

No Exit (1944) - Jean-Paul Sartre [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]


No Exit is an existentialist play by Jean-Paul Sartre, originally published in French in 1944 as Huis clos. English translations have also been performed under the titles In Camera, No Way Out, and Dead End. The play features only four characters (one of whom, the Valet, appears for only a very limited time), and one set. No Exit is the source of the famous Sartrean maxim, "Hell is other people". It has been adapted in cinema many times, notably in 1954 by Jacqueline Audry. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No_Exit [Jul 2006]

During the 1940s and 1950s Sartre's ideas remained much in vogue, and existentialism became a favoured philosophy of the beat generation. Sartre's views were counterposed to those of Albert Camus in the popular imagination. In 1948, the Vatican placed his complete works on the Index of prohibited books. Most of his plays are richly symbolic and serve as a means of conveying his philosophy. The best-known, Huis-clos (No Exit), contains the famous line: "L'enfer, c'est les autres", usually translated as "Hell, is the others" (as in Other people). --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Paul_Sartre#Sartre_and_literature* [Jul 2006]


Hell is not so much other people, but in particular needing other people. Of course that is also a defining trait of heaven, although my most "heavenly" moments have generally not been with other people, but alone, in nature. [Jul 2006]

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