Study Guide

The Plague Writing Style

By Albert Camus

Writing Style

Intricate, Conscientious

We’re talking about Camus’s style and the way he chose to write his novel; not the fictional Rieux's style and his fictional objectives. The fact that we’re reading a translation of the French makes this double sticky to analyze, and purists would argue we’re talking about (scuffles with inside book cover) translator Stuart Gilbert’s style more than Camus's. But Stuart Gilbert is whom we have to work with, so we’re just going to talk about the style as it is. Tough noogies.

The Plague is written in an elegant and sometimes elaborate language. We’re not going to lie; there are a few sentences you have to wrestle with here. But the nuanced nature of Camus’s philosophy necessitates the sometimes-complex prose. Instead of whining about it, at which we’ve found to be not so effective, take your time with the intense bits.