To Pray or Not to Pray: An exploration into the relationship between religion and isolation in The Stranger and Chronicle of a Death Foretold
Religion is a major foundation for many cultures. It is present all over the world in many different shapes and forms. But all religions have one thing in common, communality. Naturally, with rituals such as congregation people of religion are brought together. This community worships together, but this relationship extends further than the confines of a church. Members of the same church, or religion, have the same core values, and these commonalities result in a community that would not have otherwise existed. When there is a disregard for religion, there is a loss of community and thus a step towards isolation. This is best seen through the comparison of The Stranger, by Albert Camus, and Chronicle of a Death Foretold, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. In The Stranger, the main character exhibits an immense disregard for religion; coincidentally this person is very much alone in the novel. In Chronicle of a Death Foretold, the main character is an avid follower of his religion; and such, he is a member of the community and has many relationships with other members of the community.
In The Stranger, the main character Meursault is very distanced from religion. It is revealed that Meursault has always been without faith when the reader learns that Meursault’s mother “Maman had never in her life given a thought to religion” (Camus 6). With a mother whom didn’t care for religion, it would have been impossible for Meursault to practice, let alone accept, any religion. His distance from religion is seen throughout the novel. At the very beginning of the novel, during his mother’s funeral, Meursault’s distance from religion is seen by the actual order of the funeral procession. Meursault describes the order of the procession as follows, “First came the priest, then the hearse. Flanking it, the four men. Behind it, the director...
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