An Analysis of Camus' 'The Stranger'

411 Words2 Pages
Camus' The Stranger is a wistful writing that carries a sense of detachment along throughout the story. The main character, Meursault, explains a series of events that resembles the workings of a dream and puts the reader in a dazed trance as the adventure grows into the deadly conclusion. The purpose of this essay is to examine and interpret the symbol of "light" and how it affects the story of The Stranger. The sun and the light may be interchanged in this story as Meursault's constant commenting about the sun continues throughout the tale. The sunlight affects Meursault in many differing and unique ways. He commented at his mother's funeral that "The sun was now a little higher in the sky: it was starting to warm my feet." This trend continues as the main character uses the sun to describe his attitudes and behavior throughout the story. Much like Meursault, Camus presents the sunlight in a very neutral, yet powerful way. The light is merely a reflection of the demeanor of Meursault throughout the story and when he is experiencing joy the sun is helpful, but when encountering danger, as in the murder scene, the sun causes him much discomfort, confusion and is ultimately laid as the scapegoat for the motivation behind the murder. The light is a metaphor for Camus' main message of absurdity. Camus believed in challenging the notions of life and death in order to truly understand their meanings. Committing suicide or not, to Camus, was a legitimate question that helped
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