Analysis of The Stranger

The Stranger by Albert Camus focuses on Meursault, the protagonist, and his development throughout the novel. Considering Meursault’s lack of empathy for others, we are presented with a number of factors. Meursault initially attends Maman’s funeral and displays little to no emotion. Toward the end of the novel, he admits that he did not feel empathy for his own mother during the funeral, nor did he experience any upsetting feelings. He has been described as hollow and devoid of empathy for the lives of others. We are given a description of Meursault’s overcoming and acceptance of what he had done and lost at the end, when he pleads guilty during the trial. When his true nature is revealed, the moral lesson to be learned is revealed. When you take something for granted, the moment it slips from your grasp, you realize you’ve lost something valuable. Only then do you realize that what you had may be nearly impossible to reclaim.

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