Everyone has felt the pressure of societal expectations during their lifetime. The negative effects society brings on one’s life can lead to a feeling of rejection towards the people who do not conform to meet those standards. Gabriel García Márquez, author of Chronicle of a Death Foretold, and Albert Camus, author of The Stranger, both construct the external moral conflict of society versus the protagonist in order to critique the way society fails to accept the moral values of the people who differ from the norm.
In Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Gabriel García Márquez emphasizes the central conflict of society versus the protagonist, based on beliefs and values, through the controversy leading up to the murder of Santiago Nasar, which is based on family honor and pre-marital sex. When Pedro and Pablo Vicario ask their sister, Angela Vicario, who had stolen her virginity, her response is described as “She only took the time necessary to say the name … and she nailed it to the wall with her well-aimed dart, like a butterfly with no will whose sentence has already been written. ‘Santiago Nasar,’ she said”(47). Describing Angela’s response as “only took the time necessary” indicates that she is trying to put the blame on Santiago, making him a scapegoat, in order to protect the true man who took her virginity before marriage. In the Latin American society, where the setting of the novella takes place, it is not acceptable for a woman to have pre-marital sex due to the beliefs and morals of Catholics. Santiago is represented as the butterfly “whose sentence had already been written”. Even though there is no evidence Santiago took Angela’s virginity, it is the twin’s duty to protect their sister. Therefore, Pedro and Pablo Vicario set out to kill the man who had stolen their sister’s virginity,