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Cespedes 1Jessica CespedesProf Stone12/07/18Existentialism and the Plague Existentialism is basically a fancy word for rebelling against institutions or established ideas and taking back freedom of choice. In Albert Camus The Plague, existentialism is at an all time high due to the conditions the plague has brought the town of Oran. As the Plagues’ death toll began to skyrocket during summer, townspeople became more aware of the disease and the tolls it takes on themselves, families and the town. Rambert, Father Paneloux and Dr.Rieux all have their own way to cope and revolt against the current in their town. They accept the plague and they accept that in order to live a happy life, you cannot be alone. The ethical existential issue being looked at is the revolt of Dr.Rieux and Rambert and why Father Paneloux should’ve revolted before his first sermon.Dr. Rieux was the narrator of the novel he was also a healer, humanist and an atheist. He has a deontologist point of view. He has a duty to do and that is to help ill people heal. He was the first one to alarm the authorities about the plague and encouragedthem to take action as fast as possible.Dr. Rieux was suffering just like everyone inthe town. He was separated from his ill wife and he has to take care of all the sick Cespedes 2
patients of Oran. “Thus the first thing that plague brought to our town was exile.”1(Camus,71) Dr Rieux had to deal with all the sick patients yet did not let his profession go on jeopardy because of the suffering of individuals. He is a hero because he does not let the plague take control of him. That would be his existential stance, by revolting