It’s not Mersault’s actions that influence his crime, but rather his lack of actions. His apathy for everything and the absurd causes him to place life to near or on no value whatsoever. Since he feels no remorse for Maman’s death, he certainly won’t feel anything for a stranger’s death even if he murdered him. The court looked into Mersualt’s private life and found details about the death of his mother. When Mersault’s lawyer is talking to him and it is said that, “The investigators had learned that I had “shown insensitivity” on the day of Maman’s funeral” (Camus 64).
While society has been almost inattentive to it all long, Meursault only reaches this stage by the time he confronts and accepts his own death. However, his approach to light like to his death is genuine, unlike society’s. His attitude toward light is demonstrated through the language he uses to describe it. In Part One just before Meursault kills the Arab, he characterizes the sunlight as the “blinding stream falling from the sky”(pg. 57).
Taylor Smith Mrs. Fowler IB Language Arts 17 May, 2016 The Stranger: The Epiphany The Stranger is a novel written by Albert Camus and was published in 1942. It follows the story of Meursault, an indifferent French Algerian, and his actions leading to his eventual death. Camus, a French philosopher, author, and journalist most notably renowned for his philosophy of absurdism, distributes a recurring theme of existentialism and absurdism throughout the novel, and heavily does so in passages that serve the most significance to the story. One of the most important passages within the novel is when Meursault repeatedly defies the chaplain in the cell. It serves as a pinnacle for the entire story, and grants readers a look into the main characters state of mind.
I will first discuss how Meursault appears emotionless, than how Camus uses the motif of weather to express Meursault’s emotions for him and lastly what impact this makes. Meursault is not an emotional person. Meursault often seems not to react to major events that happen to him. For example when his mom dies, he says, “Really, nothing had changed”(24). There is an obvious emotional disconnect.
Many, if not all, of the questions the magistrate and the prosecutor direct towards Meursault during the trial began with the word “why” and the conclusions made simply attempts to establish a sense of rationality in a world that is truly irrational. The word ‘again’ shows that, no matter how many times Meursault makes it evident that he has no answer to their questions, the authorities still try to force
Because he is a stranger to the rest of the society, Mersault is personally attacked because of his differences, eventually leading him to death by the guillotine. Mersault does not seem to care about the little details of life because he is living it through and getting by on the simple necessities. He focuses on his physical needs rather than his irrelevant needs because he finds they have no importance. At the very beginning of the novel, Mersault’s mother passes away. Following Maman’s death, Mersualt expresses very different emotions.
For Meursault he does not feel remorse for any of his actions or antics because there is no purpose to life; There will be no judgement or ‘Hell’ for Meursault after death. Normally people of faith abide by certain commandments that would thus grant them acceptance to ‘Heaven’. Meursault finds such beliefs as silly and pointless, much like everything else. Meursault holds a pessimistic and absurd outlook on life; Camus made it apparent to infuse his atheistic and existentialistic values into the form of
When writing the journal entries, which I intended to be more personal and insightful into Meursault’s character than the novel. I wanted to demonstrate how the actions from the past, such as having to quit school, affected him and turned him into the character readers see in the novel by taking away his meaning to life, getting an education. I did this by creating a shift in Meursault’s speech. In the first journal entry, Meursault is introspective focusing more on his dreams and ambitions. When having to quit school, Meursault’s speech becomes more like in the novel, monotone, simplistic, and focusing on the world around him and how he feels at the present.
It is in these bizarre acts that the others deem Meursault a stranger. His disregard for social constructions presents the views of the existentialist philosophy. Love is known to be deception by existential theory due to one’s desire to have someone else love him or her. Also, as mentioned before, Meursault’s conviction in God’s nonexistence makes him detached not only concerning death, but also to love, morals (Meursault also befriends his neighbor, who is also thought to be a pimp by others), and other basic human conceptions. When new friend-the pimp- asks for his help to embarrass his ex-girlfriend, Meursault again with any consideration agrees to something that would have normally been thought of as insane, and does not contemplate that there may be consequences for this agreement.
Meursault is a distinct individual who comes across socially awkward, with awareness to sensory aspects and peoples actions. He’s very disconnected from the world. Many aspects influence Meursault, some examples of these aspects are other individuals such as Raymond, Marie and the Priest. As well as other characters and their relationship with Meursault there are sensory aspects that affect Meursault. Physical things such as the sun and heat make him become uncomfortable and act “inappropriately.” The sun is present at his mother’s funeral, when he refuses to grieve.