Meursault

In: Novels

Submitted By mounster44
Words 347
Pages 2
According to the book's title, the protagonist Meursault is a stranger, but in relation to what exactly? Meursault is a stranger because he did not play the "game"- which is presented as a metaphor for the social rules, and by extension, morality in general, that is imposed on individuals by society at large. The word "game" itself signifies a sort of trickery or entertainment that people participate in to escape from the hard truths of reality.

From the onset until the end of the book, Meursault was consistently portrayed as anti-social. He focused on primarily physical things and his own desires, and with regard to anything that is socially constructed, he seems detached, ignorant or confused about. This can be seen by his stoic reaction to his mother's death, his condoning of Raymond's abuse and the focus on just the sexual aspect of his relationship with Marie.

Another aspect of Meursault that was highlighted is his desire to tell the truth. The fact that Meursault holds to his own truth regarding the death of the Arab even though he knows that he might die by the hands of the judgmental society is testament to his quest for truth. He feels sick and "imprisoned"by the fact that others are trying to impose their standards on him, whether it is his lawyer or the prosecutor. So, similar to how Christ had refused to conform to the Roman society at his time and chose to die for truth, Meursault is also refusing to play the "game," and will die for his own truth as well. Meursault's realization that he gains freedom once he acknowledges and embraces the truth for what it is- he gains self-independence and contentment by breaking free of the illusion of societal and religious constructions.

However, it seems that the implications of Meursault's truth, when applied to each individual, seems to compose a society full of anti-social people that cannot be held…...

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