Essay #1 - Joseph Dombrosky ARLT 100g/35224D Culture...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Joseph Dombrosky ARLT 100g/35224D: Culture, Conformity, Revolt David Rollo “Portrait of a Man When Faced with the Absurd” An analysis of Camus’ The Stranger Different philosophies have attempted to explain human life and its meaning for thousands of years. Albert Camus, a French writer, attempted to expand on his philosophy of the absurd through literature. In his novel, The Stanger , Camus explored what he termed “the nakedness of man faced with the absurd.” This exploration not only gives insight and, more importantly, clarification of the absurd, but forces the reader into direct contact with the philosophy. While The Stranger forces us to confront the idea of the absurd, the reflections of the main character, Meursault, during his imprisonment provide a medium for Camus to present reasoning against misinterpretation of his philosophy. The Stranger tells the story of a man who commits a senseless murder on an Algerian beach. This man, Meursault, is seemingly devoid of conventional emotion and holds a certain attitude of indifference throughout the novel. He is driven by life’s physical pleasures and doesn’t show the expected expressive reactions to certain events, such as his mother’s death. In fact, the opening of the novel: “Maman died today. Or yesterday maybe, I don’t know,” immediately exposes the reader to what they should expect of Meursault as he continues the story, a type of conventional apathy. What is more important about Meursault as a character is how Camus uses him to elicit the idea of absurdity. The absurd is the desire that man has for understanding even though the limitations of his logic do not allow him to fulfill that desire.
Image of page 1

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
More specifically, human existence is absurd due to the dichotomy of a natural need for knowledge and an inability to attain that knowledge. [1] Meursault illustrates the absurd through his narration of The Stranger , which is done in such a way that the reader could construe multiple meanings. This structure creates a type of
Image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern