Meursault Justifies Murder

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The emotionless anti-hero, Monsieur Meursault, embarks on a distinct philosophical journey through The Stranger. Confident in his ideas about the world, Meursault is an unemotional protagonist who survives without expectations or even aspirations. Because of his constant indifference and lack of opinions about the world, it can be denoted that he undergoes a psychological detachment from the world and society. It is through these characteristics that exist in Meursault that Camus expresses the absurd. Starting from the very first sentence of the book, “Maman died today. Or maybe yesterday, I don’t know.” (Camus 1) The indifferent tone from these short sentences convey a rather apathetic attitude from Meursault’s part. Not only does he not…show more content…
Society was unable to comprehend Meursault's apathetic reasons for the murder and attempts to rationalize with it through the trial to try to come to an understanding as to what may have incited his actions.
Meursault experiences a philosophical triumph as his execution dates nears, due to his acceptance of the absurd, which confirms his identity; much like the absurd world, he doesn’t acknowledge human experiences and relationships. He is content with this, and welcomes the crowd, confident that nothing can take away his satisfaction. This shows that while he gains philosophical peace, he still is unable to grapple with interpersonal relationships and the role he was intended to play in society. Meursault does not overcome society’s judgment, but rather revels in the hatred. Through his conversation with the chaplain, Meursault discovers happiness in the fact that the absurd world mirrors his own indifference. Meursault compares his beliefs about life to those the chaplain holds, and comes to some finality in his thought process. He settled on a firm stance, “sure about [himself], about everything, surer than [the chaplain] could ever be, sure of my life and sure of the death waiting for me” (Camus 108). Meursault becomes infatuated with the absurd world, rather than rejecting it in disgust or horror. He strongly identifies with the absurdity, “opening up to the gentle indifference of the world” (Camus
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