The people never change their lives, that in

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The Webster dictionary defines the word irrationality as the quality of being illogical or unreasonable.  Everyone does certain things that can be classified as irrational, but there is also some people who’s entire life can be classified as irrational and does not follow societal norms. Meursault’s life can be classified in that way. In the novel The Stranger by Albert Camus Meursault has a very dark view on human life and the purpose that humans have in the world.  His actions are seen as irrational and somewhat extreme by society and throughout the novel Meursault’s view on life is conflicting with society’s view and his actions correspond with his irrationality. The theme’s of irrationality of the universe, the meaninglessness of human life, and the importance of the physical world are evident in the novel The Stranger by Albert Camus. The second theme portrayed in the novel is the meaninglessness of human life. For example, in the quote “If you go slowly, you risk getting sunstroke. But if you go too fast, you work up a sweat and then catch a chill inside the church.” She was right. There was no way out. (part 1 chapter 1) The nun is talking to Meursault literally about the weather but his comment “there was no way out” is him realizing that her words were true about life also, that every man born, their life can only end in death and there is no way to escape death.  Meursault’s view on life can be described as very dim. Throughout the novel he portrays his views in is irrational actions and words.  In addition, the quote  “I said that people never change their lives, that in any case one life was as good as another and that I wasn’t dissatisfied with mine here at all.” (part 1 chapter 5) is Meursault responding to his boss after he was offered a promotion in paris.  This shows his belief of the pointlessness of human life, and that everyone is equal because everyone meets the same fate of death. Meursault believes that everyone will eventually meet death and after he accepts this he becomes content with his life because he knows that it will end just like everyone else’s in the world.  The meaninglessness of human life is and essential theme in the novel that expresses the thoughts of the main character Meursault. The third theme that can be seen in the novel The Stranger by Albert Camus is the importance of the physical world.  Meursault centers his attention to his own body and the physical aspects of life.  Meursault has no interest in emotion or his mental state.  For example, in the quote “Maman died today. Or yesterday maybe, I don’t know. I got a telegram from the home: “Mother deceased. Funeral tomorrow. Faithfully yours.” That doesn’t mean anything. Maybe it was yesterday.” (pg 1)  Meursault shows his lack of emotion and care for his deceased mother.  Which is his most important character trait. His ability to put aside emotion influences his actions because he never thinks about consequences.  In addition, the quote “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.” (part 1 chapter 4) Marie asks Meursault if he loved her and he responded with a blunt but completely honest explanation of what he thought.  His lack of emotion and detachment can be seen in this quote when he says that “it didn’t mean anything.”  Meursault believes that all human life is equal and everyone dies so he does not know what the concept of love is and shows no interest in concerning himself with emotions.  He only focuses on the physical side of his relationship with Marie because that is all he knows.  The physical aspects of life is a theme that is embedded throughout the novel in Meursault words and actions.   

Categories: Emotions


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