An Existentialist Approach to Jean-Paul Sartre’s "No Exit"

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Mardin Artuklu Üniversitesi Yayınları

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Existentialism that began to be active in the 20th century is the approach to define the human being not only as the thinking being but also as the acting and feeling human individual. This study aims to analyse Jean-Paul Sartre’s "No Exit" (1944) in terms of existentialist approach, namely human’s existence of freedom which depends on the on-going relationships between the aspects of ‘being as a subject’ and ‘being as an object’. The play No Exit depicts the afterlife in which Joseph Garcin, Ines Serrano and Estelle Rigault are brought to the same room in hell. The ‘being as a subject’ of the three characters is judged by people on the earth and is reduced to the state of ‘being as an object’ which gets the unchangeable state by the judgment of others. Joseph will be remembered as a coward and Estelle as a pretty blonde who is the murderer of her child and crazy about money and males while nobody will remember Inez at all. They become the prisoners of each other in hell where the time is stable and where they are completely deprived of the freedom of existence of ‘being as a subject’ because they no longer have the opportunity to act and to change the thoughts about themselves. This imprisonment fixes them in the state of ‘being as an object’. The victim changes every time and there are two tortures against it. Therefore, they are both the torturers and the victims: Hell is other people.


Anahtar Kelimeler

Existentialism, Being-for-itself, Being-for-others, Jean-Paul Sartre, "No Exit".


KAVRAMLAR VE KURAMLAR: Düşünce Bilimleri (CONCEPTS AND THEORIES: The Study of Thought)

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Alkan, H. (2020). “An Existentialist Approach to Jean-Paul Sartre’s No Exit”, Kavramlar ve Kuramlar: Düşünce Bilimleri, Ed. M. Nesim Doru & Kamuran Gökdağ. Mardin: Mardin Artuklu Üniversitesi Yayınları. pp.863-870.