Can someone explain me the true meaning of The Stranger?
I only read short stories and magic realism, so i don't know anything about philosophy and stuff. I bought The Stranger because someone told me that Borges was a huge influence on Camus, but when I readed the book, it was just an edgy dude doing whatever he wants. I know that Camus wrote the book as a critique of nihilism, but when i read it i can't find anything about that.
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It's a thought experiment about how a nihilist or someone who had lapsed into nihilism would actually fit into the world
Camus is an absurdist and champions caring for its own sake
"It was true. Summer was over and autumn had not yet begun. Swifts were still calling in the gentle sky. "Will you come back soon?"
"But I haven't left yet. Why do you mention that?"
"Oh, it was just to say something." A trolley goes by. A car.
"Is it true I look like my father?"
"The spitting image. Of course, you didn't know him. You were six months old when he died. But if you had a little moustache!"
He mentioned his father without conviction. No memory, no emotion. Probably he was very ordinary. Besides, he had been very keen to go to war. His head was split open in the battle of the Marne. Blinded, it took him a week to die; his name is listed on the local war memorial.
"When you think about it," she says, "it was better that way. He would have come back blind or crazy. So, the poor man..."
What is it then that keeps him in this room, except the certainty that it's still the best thing to do, the feeling that the whole absurd simplicity of the world has sought refuge here.
"Will you be back again?" she says. "I know you have work to do. Just from time to time..."
But where am I now? And how can I separate this deserted cafe from that room in my past? I don't know any longer whether I'm living or remembering. The beams from the lighthouse are here. And the Arab stands in front of me telling me that he is going to close. I have to leave. I no longer want to make such dangerous descents. It is true, as I take a last look at the bay and its light, that what wells up in me is not the hope of better days but a serene and primitive indifference to everything and to myself. But I must break this too limp and easy curve. I need my lucidity. Yes, everything is simple. It's men who complicate things. Don't let them tell us any stories. Don't let them say about the man condemned to death: "He is going to pay his debt to society," but: "They're going to chop his head off." It may seem like nothing. But it does make a little difference. There are some people who prefer to look their destiny straight in the eye."