“And do you really live with the thought that when you die, you die, and nothing remains?”
“Yes,” I said.
___Albert Camus. The Stranger__
I should have a formal review for The Stranger, but there is so much I want to say that it is hard for me to follow the review format. However, I feel really guilt because more than any fiction, The Stranger, deserves better these random lines. My mood right now is just not suitable for any strict and format writing right now so bear with me.
The Stranger tells a story of a man, who lives in his own world, separates from the others. He possesses no specific emotions. Love, hatred, grief, what do those feelings really mean anyway? What is wrong to be calm in your mother’s funeral? Does that mean you don’t love her? And even if that is the truth then so what? Can you jude someone from your first impression and persistent keep your negative feeling instead of actually taking time to understand the person?
The Stranger brings up many sensitive and challenging topics such as individual vs society, open- minded approach, and moral standard. Do you always have an urge to fit in with people around you? Do you always feel embarrass when you say something strange or different from normal people? Do you freak out when your logic is not the same as everyone else? Meursault does not bother by these feelings. He can be so indifferent with this world, and live just the way he likes. Yes, sometimes, it confuses him because he does not any specific feeling. He does not cry at his mother’s funeral. He does not understand what is difference it will make if he marry or not marry to her girlfriend. And by the way, he is also not so certain that he loves her or not.
Some people views him as an anti- hero, and some believes he is both. Well for me, Meursault is neither. He is just a victim from what I cannot determine. Little bit from himself, little bit from the society. The Stranger portrays him as a person who acts without emotion whereas the society’s behavior always under the influence of emotions. I hate it. I hate to see our world so ugly and narrow that it cannot give space for human to grow and express himself/ herself. I always dreams to the day that we can throw away our masks and be ourselves, in a way be truthful about we think, be brave to do what we want. And yet, the society looks at Meursault as a threat that he has to be destroyed by any cost. Is his unfortunate death is the reality of my dream?