Meursault: Cold and Heartless, or All-knowing?

Throughout the novel, The Stranger, we are often presented with the idea that Meursault is unfeeling and doesn’t really confront his emotions. He often comes off as cold, closed off, and unable to love. When he attended his mother’s funeral, he didn’t want to see her body and never so much as shed a tear for his dead mother. Despite this, he felt as though he “was able to understand Maman better”(15). While he didn’t have an outwardly expressive legubious reaction to the death of his mon, he was able to foster a deeper connection and understanding of her even afer her passing. Towards the end of the novel, he states that she “must have felt free and ready to live it all again. Nobody, nobody had the right to cry over her”(122). He obviously has found peace in her death, maybe due to the fact that his own is impending. He is able to find comfort in the fact that she has died and is reliving her life elsewhere. I found it immensly interesting how right at the end of the novel Meursault brings up the fact that he feels no one should be allowed to cry over her. Is this beause of his own guilt about not being sad at her funeral, or because she is happy and free now in death. He was simply ahead of his time, not crying for her at any point, because he new she was free, and that death had offered her this freedom.

One thought on “Meursault: Cold and Heartless, or All-knowing?


    true that it is better to have no emotion sometimes so that you can avoid any pain, however, emotion and pain is what makes us human and they are part f the human expirience.


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