The Stranger Essay

463 WordsDec 6, 20112 Pages
Meursault's actions reflect his inner self in many ways. He is the protagonist in the story. He emotionally really doesn't care about other people like is mother and Marie. Many events end up leading to the his murder of an Arab. During his trial, there was no emotional attachment between him and his mother. That becomes a main focus of the prosecutor's argument that he is a monster. Meursault is a young man living in Algiers. He receives a report of his mother Madame Meursault's funeral. He attends his mothers funeral, but he does not show any outward signs of appropriate grief. He returns to his home and immediately begins an affair with Marie Cardona, a former co-worker. After the weekend ends, he concludes that his mother's death has changed nothing. The banal rhythm of a Sunday afternoon remains exactly the same as it was before. He strikes up an acquaintance with Raymond Sintes, a local gigolo and pimp. Meursault unintentionally becomes involved in a dispute between Raymond and Raymond's mistress and her brother, the Arab. The dispute ends with Meursault's murder of the Arab. Meursault, who narrates The Stranger, does not offer an explanation for the murder. It is by all appearances completely without motivation. Nevertheless, society demands a rational explanation. Meursault is arrested and brought to trial. During the trial, it becomes apparent that various members of the courtroom feel a need to explain the senseless, unmotivated killing. It refuses to convict him of the murder without imposing a rational explanation onto the event, which allows for a moral condemnation of the killing. Without a justification for moral condemnation, punishment for the murder lacks a rational basis. Unfortunately, Meursault ends up being tried and sentenced to death more on the basis of his atheism and lack of emotional attachment to his mother than on the basis of

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