The Stranger and The Moviegoer: Detachment and Acceptance

In The Stranger, Meursault is very detached from his life and his experiences. He is often indifferent to what happens around him. This is evident when Meursault describes his altercation with the Arab men on the beach, stating that “it was then that I realized that you could either shoot or not shoot” (56). Meursault is clearly demonstrating characteristics of indifference, even in an important moment in his life like this one. This is very similar to the experiences of Binx in the novel The Moviegoer. Binx often daydreams and wanders the streets without a destination, clearly detached from society and his life. Furthermore, Binx uses movies as a way to escape from the trauma and hardships in his life. Clearly, there is a parallel between Meursault in The Stranger and Binx in The Moviegoer.

In addition, both Meursault and Binx only reach satisfaction and a sense of fulfillment once they accept their fates. In The Stranger, Meursault is able to accept his fate, despite being sentenced to death and in jail, stating that, “for the first time, in that night alive with signs and stars, I opened myself to the gentle indifference of the world” (122). Similarly, in The Moviegoer, Binx finds joy by not dwelling on the hardships and things wrong with his life, but by watching movies as a form of escape. There is clearly a link between Binx and Meaursault, as they both are detached from society around them and they are happy once accepting their fate.

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