Compare and Contrast Essay

Words 1,210

This paper discusses life and existence as perceived by two very different writers—Flannery O’Connor and Albert Camus. Flannery O’Connor stands out as a striking writer. Her composition of short fiction is the one discussed here is A Good Man is Hard to Find. While Albert Camus’ The Stranger – the symbol of existentialism and the absurd- is analyzed.

There is a sense of detachment in the classic of Existentialism, the novel The Stranger (1942), by Albert Camus. The story is set in Algeria. The book is influenced by the existentialist movement and narrates a seemingly simple story of a young French Algerian named Meursault.  His mother dies and as the novel opens he declares: “Maman died today” but he can’t stand sitting up in her wake. He offends the community and friends by his failure to react sensitively to her death.  He does not weep, does not want to see her body and goes away straight away after she is buried.  At the close of the day he observes:

It occurred to me that anyway, one more Sunday was over, that Maman was buried now, that I was going back to work, and that, really, nothing had changed.

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