How Can Sisyphus Be Happy with His Fate?

  • Sibel Oktar
Part of the Analecta Husserliana book series (ANHU)


“There is but one truly serious philosophical problem and that is suicide” says Albert Camus in his The Myth of Sisyphus. This is to judge whether life is worth living or not. This is literally a matter of life and death. This emphasizes the most profound question of philosophy in a very radical way, that is; “what is the meaning of life?” Each value system could provide a different answer. Thus the scope of this paper is restricted to a more specific argument which will be a review of Camus’ interpretation of ‘the myth of Sisyphus’ and an analysis of an existence in the world in terms of the Wittgensteinian understanding of ethics. Within this context I will investigate the relationships between concepts such as ‘suicide’, ‘death’ and ‘happiness’ as has been defined or suggested by Camus and Wittgenstein. Then I will investigate whether Sisyphus is happy within the confines of the general question what makes me want to live rather than end my life if the world is meaningless. I think Camus’ absurd man and Wittgenstein’s man who views the world sub specie aeterniare the same. When Sisyphus’s condition is analysed within this sameness then how Sisyphus can be happy seems clear. I think Camus is right to assume that Sisyphus is happy, as both Wittgenstein and Camus suggest, one can see that there is no purpose of existence other than to live and still be happy. Sisyphus is happy not despite his fate but by recognising this fate and renouncing the amenities of life by embracing his fate.


Penguin Book Worth Living Happy Life Limited Freedom Passionate Attention 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Arts and SciencesOzyegin UniversityUskudarTurkey

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