The Stranger by Camus Essay Topics



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  • Suggested Essay Topics

The Stranger


by:
Albert Camus

Suggested Essay Topics

1. Trace the development of Meursault’s
philosophy. How does he come to open himself to “the gentle indifference
of the world”? What spurs his revelation? How do earlier events
in the novel prepare us to expect it?

2. We see characters in the book
solely through Meursault’s eyes, but Meursault typically tells us
very little. Using the information that Meursault provides, analyze
a character such as Marie and Raymond. What level of insight does Meursault
provide into these characters’ personalities?

3. Compare and contrast the relationship
between Salamano and his dog with the relationship between Meursault
and his mother. What are the similarities? Which is more loving?

4. Discuss the style of The
Stranger
. How does Meursault’s language correspond to the
subjects he describes? Does it evolve or change as the novel goes
on? Does the stripped-down prose of the novel’s first half limit
its expressive power?

5. Is Meursault really a threat
to his society? Does he deserve the death penalty? Is he more or
less dangerous than a criminal who commits a crime with clear motive?

6. In his jail cell, Meursault
finds an old newspaper article about a Czechoslovakian man who is
murdered by his mother and sister. How does this article relate
to Meursault’s own trial for murder? How does this article expand
the themes in The Stranger? How does it support
Camus’s philosophy of the absurd?

7. Analyze the passages describing
Meursault’s walk down the beach before he kills the Arab. How does
Camus build tension in the passage? How is it different from the
passages preceding it? Meursault says at his trial that he killed
the Arab because of the sun. Is this explanation at all valid?


Previous

How to Write Literary Analysis
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More Help

  • Character List

    CHARACTERS
  • Meursault: Character Analysis

    CHARACTERS
  • Important Quotations Explained

    MAIN IDEAS
  • Themes

    MAIN IDEAS
  • Review Quiz

    FURTHER STUDY

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Close Welcome Banner

Welcome to the new SparkNotes!

Your book-smartest friend just got a makeover. Our most popular lit guides now have twice as much
helpful stuff, including writing guides, expanded quotes, and updated quick quizzes. Tell us what you think!
Your book-smartest friend just got a makeover.
Tell us what you think!

  • Home

  • Literature

  • The Stranger

  • Suggested Essay Topics

The Stranger


by:
Albert Camus

Suggested Essay Topics

1. Trace the development of Meursault’s
philosophy. How does he come to open himself to “the gentle indifference
of the world”? What spurs his revelation? How do earlier events
in the novel prepare us to expect it?

2. We see characters in the book
solely through Meursault’s eyes, but Meursault typically tells us
very little. Using the information that Meursault provides, analyze
a character such as Marie and Raymond. What level of insight does Meursault
provide into these characters’ personalities?

3. Compare and contrast the relationship
between Salamano and his dog with the relationship between Meursault
and his mother. What are the similarities? Which is more loving?

4. Discuss the style of The
Stranger
. How does Meursault’s language correspond to the
subjects he describes? Does it evolve or change as the novel goes
on? Does the stripped-down prose of the novel’s first half limit
its expressive power?

5. Is Meursault really a threat
to his society? Does he deserve the death penalty? Is he more or
less dangerous than a criminal who commits a crime with clear motive?

6. In his jail cell, Meursault
finds an old newspaper article about a Czechoslovakian man who is
murdered by his mother and sister. How does this article relate
to Meursault’s own trial for murder? How does this article expand
the themes in The Stranger? How does it support
Camus’s philosophy of the absurd?

7. Analyze the passages describing
Meursault’s walk down the beach before he kills the Arab. How does
Camus build tension in the passage? How is it different from the
passages preceding it? Meursault says at his trial that he killed
the Arab because of the sun. Is this explanation at all valid?


Previous

How to Write Literary Analysis
Next

How to Cite This SparkNote

More Help

  • Character List

    CHARACTERS
  • Meursault: Character Analysis

    CHARACTERS
  • Important Quotations Explained

    MAIN IDEAS
  • Themes

    MAIN IDEAS
  • Review Quiz

    FURTHER STUDY

From the SparkNotes Blog

Every Shakespeare Play Summed Up in a Single Sentence
By

Elodie

August 23, 2018

What You Should (& Shouldn’t) Take Into Consideration When Choosing A College
By

Orli Spierer

August 27, 2018

If the Greek Gods Had Tinder
By

Elodie

August 30, 2018

Every Book on Your English Syllabus Summed Up in a Quote from The Office
By

Elodie

August 20, 2018

60 Young Adult Movie Adaptations, Ranked
By

Elodie

August 23, 2018