Albert Camus' The Plague, takes place in the desert town of Oran, Algeria, in northern Africa. It is the perfect setting for this story to take place. The ordinariness of Oran is contrasted with the extraordinary business of the plague. Sprintzen points out that "There is a mythic significance of Oran. Given the previous description of the quality of Oranian life, the selection of Oran as the location for the outbreak of plague should not come as a surprise"(Sprintzen 38). In Oran, life for its inhabitants has lost meaning. The plague offers them a chance to give meaning back to their lives. The plot of the story is revealed in five parts, over which we see the characters undergo changes. Through the Oranian's attitudes towards death in The Plague, they go through stages, which leave them with a final hope for life.
As the novel starts, the Oranians are completely unaware of what is happening or what is about to happen around them and therefore cannot possibly be aware of the coming plague. The opening portion describes men's individual actions in a city as yet not officially touched by the plague. Riley believes that "First the people of Oran, and they are not extraordinary in this way, are characterized as making no effort to reach the true nature of each other, and, unaware of the reality of their world and it other inhabitants, they are unfit to become easily aware of the coming plague" (Riley 93). The main focus of every person in Oran is himself. Everyone in Oran wishes to be an individual, to have none of the problems of the rest of the world. Sprintzen observes that "The people don't want to be stuck in the same boat with someone else; each believes one man's problems are his...
... middle of paper ...
...ue and each Oranian will have somewhat of a new dimension as an individual. Throughout the chronicle Rieux has commented on the townspeople's failure before the plague to attain a more varied, joyous, appreciative sense of life. Now, he sees lovers wishing to slow their new moments into slow motion so as to savor all of its thrill. For the present human love is violently rekindled.
Throughout The Plague we see both the town of Oran ans its citizens change along with various stages of the Plague. It seems to go through stages of unawareness, awareness, death, commitment and life. This way we see a change that occurs from the beginning of the novel from an unawareness of whats happening about them to a new sense for life. While the plague may have destroyed the town and many lives within it, it offers the Oranians a chance to give meaning back to their lives.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Existentialism and The Plague In the mid 1940s, a man by the name of Albert Camus began to write a story. This story he called La Pesté. Written in French, the novel became extremely popular and has since been translated numerous times into many languages. This story has been read over and over, yet it tells more than it seems to. This story tells the tale of a city gripped by a deadly disease. This is true enough, but this is not what the novel is about. The Plague can be read as an allegory of World War II, of the French Resistance against German Occupation.... [tags: Albert Camus Plague Essays]
3953 words (11.3 pages)
- Understanding The Plague The Plague, written by Albert Camus, is a triumph of literary craft. Camus created a commentary on the way humans react to trying situations and circumstances in his fictional city of Oran in North Africa. The reader is presented with Oran as a city of several hundred thousand people. All of whom seem to take life for granted. The people of Oran ar constantly driven by business or money and only stop for life's finer pleasures on the weekends. A fairly accurate parallel to today's world.... [tags: Albert Camus Plague Essays]
757 words (2.2 pages)
- Albert Camus' Philosophy in The Plague To know ourselves diseased is half our cure. - Alexander Pope As the title clearly suggests, the novel The Plague is, indeed, a story of disease. On the surface, the novel The Plague, may be an accounting of facts detailing the outbreak of bubonic plague in the town of Oran. But on a deeper level, it is a novel that reveals awareness and acceptance of the limits of human existence. And it is also a reminder of our absurd freedom and the choices we make in life, especially when facing death.... [tags: Albert Camus Plague Essays]
2837 words (8.1 pages)
- Finding Meaning in Albert Camus’ The Plague Socrates, a Greek philosopher, once said that “the unexamined life is not worth living” (Apology 38b). Like Socrates, Albert Camus believed that a man needs to live meaningfully. In his novel The Plague Camus creates characters who are forced to think, reflect, and assume responsibility for living as they battle an epidemic of bubonic plague that is ravaging the Algerian port of Oran. For ten months as the outbreak isolates the city from the rest of the world, each of the citizens reacts in a unique way.... [tags: Albert Camus Plague Essays]
1281 words (3.7 pages)
- Inexperienced Minds in The Plague The town itself, let us admit, is ugly. These are the words of Dr. Bernard Rieux, the narrator of Albert Camus The Plague. His accurate, unexaggerated descriptions of a town’s sufferings, bring the novel to life. The town of Oran becomes afflicted with a plague, and Rieux, the town doctor, watches the town quickly die away. He joins forces with Jean Tarrou, Raymond Rambert, Joseph Grand, and Father Paneloux, hoping to defeat the unbeatable enemy. The quarantined town ultimately defeats the disease, but not before incredible losses are suffered.... [tags: Albert Camus Plague Essays]
1930 words (5.5 pages)
- A book of horrors, fear and death. “The Plague” is a book by Albert Camus which weaves these emotions and events into one suspenseful tale. Each paragraph and section is written and structured in such a way as to give the reader insight into the feelings of the victims of the plague, and to show somewhat of a theme. The passage from section 4, part 4, line number 1 to line number 35 gives us a glimpse of the melancholy of the people of Oran to their dead loved ones to the extent that they do not attend All Souls' Day, for they were thinking of them too much as it was.... [tags: the plague]
912 words (2.6 pages)
- Running Out of Time Time is only running out, and it is one of the most vital and overlooked qualities of life. Albert Camus highlights the theme of time in his 1947 novel, The Plague. Through the use of allegory and point of view, Camus substantiates that when people are not aware of time and its advancing, they are wasting the precious and limited time of their lives. He constantly establishes that the amount of consciousness obtained by a person is the difference between spending time wisely and foolishly.... [tags: absurdism, imprisonment]
1014 words (2.9 pages)
- The Plague by Albert Camus Albert Camus' The Plague, takes place in the desert town of Oran, Algeria, in northern Africa. It is the perfect setting for this story to take place. The ordinariness of Oran is contrasted with the extraordinary business of the plague. Sprintzen points out that "There is a mythic significance of Oran. Given the previous description of the quality of Oranian life, the selection of Oran as the location for the outbreak of plague should not come as a surprise"(Sprintzen 38).... [tags: Papers]
2002 words (5.7 pages)
- Albert Camus was a French writer who was very well known all over the world for his different works but especially with the idea of “absurdism”. Camus believed that something that was absurd was not possible by humans or logically. It was beyond ridiculous and therefore impossible. This was the basis of one of his most famous works, The Plague. The Plague is a novel that explores aspects of human nature and condition, destiny, God, and fate. The novel is about a plague that takes place in Oran, Algeria that is fictional, but it’s believed to be relatively based on a cholera outbreak in the mid 1800’s in Oran that killed thousands of people.... [tags: oran, selfish, Dr. Rieux]
934 words (2.7 pages)
- The Power of Language in The Plague In his novel The Plague, Albert Camus presents a pseudo-historical documentary of a plague that confines and controls the citizens of Oran within their city gates. The plague possesses the power of life and death over the people, as it determines which citizens will face their death or those who work to stop death. These latter men, personified by the character's of Rieux, Grand, and Tarrau, each struggle endlessly to master the plague's power over their lives, even with the realization they may never succeed.... [tags: Albert Camus Plague Essays]
1462 words (4.2 pages)