Absurdism is the key component in the story, The Stranger, and is the belief that human existence is purposeless and that is evident by the way the protagonist behaves throughout the novel. 1.”Existentialism.” The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Absurdism holds that the world is absurd and that looking for order or meaning of any kind is a futile endeavor. Under the larger umbrella of existentialism, Absurdism is a concept that stresses individual freedom, happiness and the essential meaninglessness of the world . The book, narrated by Meursault, is basically life detailed superficially by him. Middlesex: UK Penguin Classics, 1943. Free resources to assist you with your university studies! If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help! Existentialism is a philosophy that emphasizes a number of points, such as the freedom to choose and the choices and individual makes should be made without the consent of another person or standard. Existentialism although hard to define, is a collection of ideas that focus on individual existence. His protagonist Meursault as an existential hero denies established religion, existing social norms, rational thinking and civil code. VAT Registration No: 842417633. “If there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life.” The point illuminated in this quote by Camus is that although some consider viewing life with despair to be wrong, or sinful, in reality hoping for an after life, “another life”, or living a life of implacable grandeur is the real sin. Existentialism, what it represents, the results of its embodiment in a person, and the validity of the doctrine altogether are all important aspects explored in The Stranger by Albert Camus. Reference this. It is easy to highlight the absurdity of the human quest for purpose. For the first time in the entire novel he realized what his mother felt before she died, “So close to death , Maman must have felt free then ready to live it all again” (Camus, 122) throughout the entire book his mother’s death had absolutely no meaning to him at all but now when he is put in the same situation, facing death, he finally realized what it must have been like for her. 2007. http://www.answers.com/topic/existentialism2.Marcuse, Herbert. In any instanceThe Strangerprice reductions both the value of any workss and the hope of internal felicity based on a belief of divinity. “Death and Absurdism in Camus’s The Stranger.” University of Tennessee-Knoxville, Spring, 1997. In 1914, Camus’ Father was drafted into WWI and killed in France. From simple essay plans, through to full dissertations, you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs. We emphasized mainly on Meursault’s detached […], Is there truly any justice in the novel The Stranger, written by Albert Camus? The five kinds of self-knowledge, according to Ulric Neisser, are: the […], The passage taken from “The Comfort of Strangers “by Ian McEwan essentially describes the want of two sisters Eva and Maria to look beautiful and furthermore the denial of their […], During the interactive oral, we discussed the main theme of the meaninglessness of human life that is present in The Stranger by Albert Camus. Do you have a 2:1 degree or higher? Meursault has no discernable reason for his actions, such as his decision to marry Marie and his decision to kill the Arab. Likewise, the war has a similar effect, but a much more powerful impact. Abstract : Albert Camus’s present novel The Stranger widely considered as the true representation of his philosophical movement Existentialism and Absurdity. The Idea of Existentialism in The Stranger 965 Words4 Pages Existentialism is defined as "a philosophical theory or approach that emphasizes the existence of the individual person as a free and responsible agent determining his or her own development through acts of the will”. Absurdist goes a step further to say that not only is life purposeless, but any attempt at finding meaning is utterly absurd. Camus does a great job in the first part of the novel of demonstrating to the reader not only the philosophy of existentialism, but a corporal representation of it as well. Company Registration No: 4964706. While Absurdism might seem like a synonym for Existentialism, the two are slightly different. In his story “The Things They Carried”, Tim O’Brien, enlightens the reader with the many faces and emotions of men. Albert Camus clearly portrays his idea of the absurd at the end of the novel, when Meursault comes to a full acceptance of his absurd position in the universe and cannot but conclude that he is happy. In other words, existentialism it emphasizes individual freedom. The Stranger is, above all else, an absurdist novel. 1st Jan 1970 Although men are normally thought upon as the stronger of […], In The Things They Carried, as the title indicates author and Vietnam war veteran Tim O’Brien carefully describes all of the necessities of warfare carried by the men with whom […], Most veterans of the Vietnam War will remember a land that was radically different from what they knew and were used to, a country that was hot and humid, full […], Violent movies can transform a calm person’s personality to brutal. Camus just takes Mers. Perhaps the most important example of existentialism in the book is presented at the end of the novel when Meursault is sentenced to death, he faced it as an existentialist would have. Existentialism is a philosophy that emphasizes a few main points, such as the freedom to choose and how the choices you make should be made without the assistance of another person or standard. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. Existentalism, Absurdism, and The Stranger "A greater life for him cannot mean another life." Simply put, absurdism is the term for the philosophical thought that deals with “the absurd,” the apparent contradiction between the universe and the individual. Albert Camus The Stranger: Existentialism and Absurdism Essay Free Articles Existentialism is a doctrine that emphasizes the singularity and isolation of the single experience in a hostile or apathetic existence. While Absurdist might seem like a synonym for Existentialism, the two are slightly different. In 1939 he volunteered for service in WWII, but was rejected due to illness. I was just afraid, which was only natural.” (Camus, 116) Meursault rejects the chaplain’s offer telling him that he has no interest in God. “I probably did love Maman, but that didn’t mean anything. Existentialism makes the point that there is no purpose or meaning in the universe. “Sartre’s Existentialism”. Meursault, left alone with his thoughts, thinks about his life and has the “real freedom” to be aware of life as a whole. If we take a look at the life of Albert Camus himself, it’s hard to deny the fact that there is a connection between the existentialism’s inception and personal tragedy. One philosophical system that is studied by many philosophers if called existentialism. A commonly used situation that appears often in existentialist writing is death. Existentialists accept the perils and consequences of their choices and actions then keep their commitment to wherever it leads. The philosophy or theory of Existentialism is somewhat controversial, but nonetheless in many respects it has some notable and legitimate points. We are using cookies to give you the best experience on our website. We're here to answer any questions you have about our services. Cookie information is stored in your browser and performs functions such as recognising you when you return to our website and helping our team to understand which sections of the website you find most interesting and useful. Camus’ most prominent works – such as the novels The Plague, The Stranger, The Rebel, and … The reason is the tragedy and devastation the world saw at this time-several world wars in specific. Printed in Studies in Critical Philosophy. Albert Camus was a French-Algerian author and philosopher whose work was very prevalent in the mid-twentieth century. This includes, smoking, falling asleep during the vigil of his dead mother and going to the beach the next day. 29 Mar. Registered office: Venture House, Cross Street, Arnold, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG5 7PJ. N.p., n.d. Both of these are related to Modernism, which was the aftermath of the industrial revolution. “Then he wanted to know if I had hired an attorney (the magistrate). But the philosophy of existentialism is not free of criticism. Herbert Marcuse criticized existentialism, especially in Sartre’s Being and Nothingness, for projecting certain features of living in a modern, oppressive society, such as anxiety and meaninglessness, onto the nature of existence itself: “In so far as Existentialism is a philosophical doctrine, it remains an idealistic doctrine: it hypothesizes specific historical conditions of human existence into ontological and metaphysical characteristics. Translated by Joris De Bres. The novel, The Stranger, written by French author Albert Camus, is a philosophical fiction piece published in 1942. Existentialism focuses on the existence of free will and the development of the self through a person’s actions. Looking for a flexible role? Camus affirms that “the only order in a disordered world is the one we create for ourselves”(Moser 2). He wants to live with the certainties of this life, even if his only certainty is the death that awaits him “But if I don’t die today, you’ll die tomorrow, or the next day.” (Camus, 117). In 1934 he Married Simone Hié, but divorced her two years later. A significant event from the novel would be when the magistrate in the story brings out his crucifix and revealed it to the protagonist, Meursault. Right away, within the very first sentence, the reader is introduced to existentialism incarnate. Existentialism, what it represents, the results of its embodiment in a person, and the validity of the doctrine altogether are all important aspects explored in The Stranger by Albert Camus. It is shown by Meursault, his acceptance, when he The philosophy that encompasses the absurd is referred to as absurdism. He talks about the weather, the food he’s eating, about the things he did that day rather than how he feels or thinks of other people, places and things. You can find out more about which cookies we are using or switch them off in settings. Figuratively he is condemned to death and awaiting execution, is a metaphor for the human condition. Disclaimer: This is an example of a student written essay.Click here for sample essays written by our professional writers. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of UKEssays.com. Meursault is an absurd hero figuratively and literally. Existentialism and the Absurd { Philosophy Index }. This book used both Existentialism and Absurdism to promote Meursault 's problem throughout the book. The Stranger. Existentialism, what it represents, the results of its embodiment in a person, and the validity of the doctrine altogether are all important aspects explored in The Stranger by Albert Camus. On a literal level, he exemplifies the absurd characteristics of revolt, freedom, and passion outlined by Camus in “The Myth of Sisyphus.” Meursault prefers to be different than the rest of the world, and demonstrates his freedom by doing what feels appropriate to him at any given moment. Albert Camus once stated that a novel “is never anything but a philosophy expressed in images” (Kellman). This perspective undoubtedly set the foundation for his adoption of the theory of existentialism. It is, in fact, the process of creating value through rebellion that Camus believed we could create value for all … If one were to truly take a look at the universe, it would seem purposeless. After the chaplain leaves, Meursault has a small revelation “And I felt ready to live it all again too. In existentialism, you believe that there are some things that cannot be rationally explained and just happen out of your control. Ironically, it is only the thought of imminent death that leads Meursault to acknowledge anything like meaning or importance in life. “I felt that I had been happy and that I was happy again.” (Camus, 123) There was no difference between life and death, everything was the same to him such as when Marie asked if he would marry her and he said “I said it didn’t make any difference to me and that we could if she wanted to” (Camus, 41) Meursault would not care what happened in the end. In any case Meursault decided to shoot him. Though Camus does not refer to this notion or absurdity, the beliefs are performed throughout the novel. Web. Meursault passes no judgment on people and is ultimate executed for killing an Arab for no apparent reason. Is there some higher order or law governing it? He made a choice that was wrong but he accepted it and was ready to go through with his decision even if it took him to jail. The answer from The Stranger to these questions is a categorical "No." When he finally gets to the funeral, he couldn’t care less about his mother-as he rejects the offer to open the casket-but is utterly consumed by the days heat. Rather than focusing on what is important-his mother’s death-Meursault is focused on when exactly she died; whether it was yesterday or today, since the telegraph only stated the funeral would be tomorrow. Camus’ famous novel, The Stranger, is a novel that reflects the idea of the absurd. Albert Camus, being the polarized man that he was, held more firmly to the belief of Absurdism than existentialism. “I explained to him that I wasn’t desperate. Throughout The Stranger examples of existentialism can be further analyzed to expose the true self and cold nature of human beings. This corporal representation of existentialism is what makes The Stranger the unique book it is. “I felt as I understood why at the end of her life she had taken a ‘fiancé.’ ” (Camus, 122), All of these examples demonstrate that The Stranger could be a novel with the theme of existentialism but Albert Camus was an absurdist writer and the novel’s intended theme was the philosophy of the absurd. Meursault accepts his own death and the indifference of the world to his death. After the incident Meursault is sent to jail for murder. While absurdism may be considered a branch of existentialism, it is a specific idea that is not necessary to an existentialist view. The absurd refers to the conflict between the human tendency to seek value and meaning in life and the human inability to find any, absurd does not mean “logically impossible,” but rather “humanly impossible.” (Kierkegaard, 19) Most of the Absurdist content of the novel comes near the end, where Meursault sits in his cell awaiting his execution, and gets in heated debate with the prison chaplain who tries to convert him to Christianity. Albert Camus, being the polarized man that he was, held more firmly to the belief of Absurdism than existentialism. No plagiarism, guaranteed! 6.White, Ray. He uses Mers. Registered Data Controller No: Z1821391. During the second beach fight when Meursault shoots the Arab with Raymond’s gun one of the Arabs draws his knife and holds it up to Meursault, Meursault isn’t bothered by the Arab’s threatening action, it was the light from the sun that reflected into his eyes along with the intense heat that was bothering him “The scorching blade slashed at my eyelashes and stabbed at my stinging eyes.” (Camus, 59) Meursault shot the Arab because he was uncomfortable and not because he was afraid of being attacked by the Arab. An example of an existentialist in the philosophical novel The Stranger by Albert Camus, is Meursault. Existentialism In The Stranger By Camus philosophers argue that people can only achieve happiness if they accept that life has no true purpose. Reader is introduced to existentialism incarnate must accept the absolute indifference of world. Essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help need to enable or disable cookies again died or! 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