Addressing a chance acquaintance in an Amsterdam bar, Jean-Baptiste Clamence remarks that Amsterdam’s concentric circles resemble the circles of hell. Clamence, a successful barrister realises the deep-seated hypocrisy of his existence.
‘An irresistibly brilliant examination of modern conscience’ The New York Times
Jean-Baptiste Clamence is a soul in turmoil. Over several drunken nights in an Amsterdam bar, he regales a chance acquaintance with his story. From this successful former lawyer and seemingly model citizen a compelling, self-loathing catalogue of guilt, hypocrisy and alienation pours forth. The Fall (1956) is a brilliant portrayal of a man who has glimpsed the hollowness of his existence. But beyond depicting one man’s disillusionment, Camus’s novel exposes the universal human condition and its absurdities – for our innocence that, once lost, can never be recaptured …
‘Camus is the accused, his own prosecutor and advocate. The Fall might have been called “The Last Judgement” ‘