Reaction Paper

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The Stranger
In Albert Camus’s The Stranger, he shares with the reader, the life of an immensely complicated character. The story is presented to the reader by the character himself in most of the story. The character’s name is Meursault, a detached and semi-normal shipping clerk. Meursault appears to be rather stoic and is devoid of emotions. Meursault remains unaffected by passion and emotions throughout the story: however as the story progress towards the end Meursault is showing some feelings. Camus’s The Stranger is an example of existentialism and includes absurdism, as well as stoicism, some nihilism, and some naturalism and he shares with the reader examples of the aforementioned in almost every part of the story. Camus begins the story with the main character Meursault learning of the death of his mother after he receives a telegram. Meursault said “Maman died today. Or yesterday maybe, I don’t know.”(p. 3) The reader is immediately introduced to the stoicism of Meursault. Meursault is without feelings as he apologizes to his employer because he has to take a couple of days off from work because of his mother’s funeral. He is an extremely strange fellow. At the funeral, he shows no bereavement: when asked if he wants to view his mother’s body, he refuses, and talks about the others who at the funeral. He is emotionless throughout the funeral and drinks coffee and smokes during the vigil. It seems that all that Meursault can remember is that during the long hot walk to his mother’s gravesite was the heat from the sun, his mother’s boyfriend Perez fainting, his mother’s casket being placed in the ground and dirt being thrown over it, and how happy he was to board the bus to go back to his home and bed in Algiers. Elements of the absurd can be supported by these events.

A day later he meets a female who once worked with him and he engages in a love affair with her. Once again, showing no emotions, only satisfying physical need, and...
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