Initially, when we began reading “The Stranger,” many of us commented on Meursault’s robot-like, emotionless demeanor. However, as the story continues it is clear that he is grieving in his own unique way. Through the notation and description of weather it is evident that he is expressing some emotions and thoughts.
Specifically, on his mothers funeral day, Meursault uses the weather as a reason to be irritated. However, it is not a coincidence that the weather and sun are scorching and unbearable on an emotionally taxing day for any human being, bearing a loved one. “All of it-the sun, the smell of leather and horse dung from the hearse, the smell of the varnish and incense, and my fatigue after a night without sleep-was making it hard for me to see or think straight (Camus, 17).” Was it truly the sun and smells making it all too bearable for him, or was it the reality of having to deal with his mothers death?
Many times it is easy to criticize someone and their actions as a reaction, but in the context of the death of a loved one, every person deals with it in their own way. While it may be typical to express sorrow, others bottle it up, potentially releasing it in unconventional ways. In the case of Meaursalt, his emotions come out in quite a disturbing way. There was no real rhyme or reason for him killing the man, making it plausible that it was an emotional breakdown stemming from his mothers death. Furthermore, it is important to note he was alone in her death, with no other family members there to comfort him.
(Blog Post #1)