The Stranger and the Alchemist

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Belief and Response Essay
As one would make it through The Alchemist or The Stranger they would start to notice a clear separation of what each of these books portray. On one side you have The Alchemist which represents more of a positive outlook on life and following your dreams. On the other you have The Stranger which depicts more of a negative connotation on life. Although these two accounts seem far from each other, they present themes throughout the text that show up in both novels. A theme commonly noticed in both books is “love” and its effects on each books main character. Another is “the meaning of life”, which explains why we are here on this earth. The last is the idea of “destiny/fate”, which looks around how we live our lives as humans.

One of the most prevalent themes that jump out at you in both of these reads is “Love”. Coelho shows his version of love in a very innocent way by introducing a young man to a girl very early in the story and within minutes of meeting her, the main character Santiago recognizes that he begins “feeling something he had never experienced before: the desire to live in one place forever. With the girl with the raven hair, his days would never be the same again.” (pg. 6) Santiago experiences something few get the chance too, and that is love at first sight. In the other novel Meursault has trouble realizing what love is and if he really did love Marie. “A minute later she asked me if I loved her. I told her it didn’t mean anything but that I didn’t think so” (pg.35) By saying this Meursault shows that he thinks he’s not in love but he really has no idea what love is, ensuing his thoughts that there is no point to love in general. Without question I believe in love. Even though I may not fall in love with every girl I talk to like Santiago, I still understand the concept, not just with relationships but within my family. Love is the glue that holds us together and if it wasn’t there then...
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