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The Guest by Albert Camus
Transcript of The Guest by Albert Camus
Time of war, revolution. After a long season of drought and poverty, and at the beginning of a harsh winter. Daru
The schoolhouse is Daru's home, although with the sudden blizzard none of his students attend school anymore. Daru spends the blizzard in his classroom and the administration has given him wheat to distribute to his pupils. Because of the wheat supply during the drought he felt like a lord because he was surrounded by poverty and he had enough wheat for himself and his students. He is from a region that is described as cruel, but he also feels exiled everywhere. Daru argues against delivering the Arab to Tinguit, and is forced into a hard decision to either deliver the Arab to prison or not.
Balducci is the man on the horse who leads the Arab up the hill to Daru's school. He is an old gendarme. He looks upon Daru as a son because Daru reminds him of his own son, but is insulted by Daru's refusal to turn in the Arab. It is Balducci who first speaks of a revolt to Daru, and speaks about the obligations that men face during war. He wants to retire, but he is resigned to his duties.
He wears a blue jellaba, sandals, and a cheche on his head. He is very timid and fearful, and even tough he is going to jail and possibly killed, he does not try to escape even though he has a chance to escape. At the end, he decides to walk towards imprisonment. Conflict: Symbol: Biography of Albert Camus: A schoolmaster who has been living at a temporarily abandoned school, is greeted by an old gendarme named Balducci who leaves him with a Arab prisoner. The schoolmaster was instructed to bring the Arab prisoner to the city for administration at the police office. After spending the night with the prisoner, the schoolmaster decides to leave the prisoner on the path with supplies letting the prisoner decide for himself whether to turn himself in or escape. Theme: Albert Camus was born on November 7, 1913 in Algeria. Albert was a very popular French writer, who wrote about the experiences of dominating parties in the thirties in Algeria. His parents being of semi-proletarian views, attaches to revolutionary tendencies, and a deep interest in philosophy, Albert left Algeria and moved to France at 25. Albert started off first as a newspaper journalist, and political journalism and began writing fiction, essays and also became a playwright. Other works by Albert Camus consist of “The Fall”, “The Myth of Sisyphus”, and “The Stranger”. Albert was killed in a car accident on the 4th of January 1960. Revolver:
The revolver symbolizes the sign of forced sides... Balducci forced the issue of choosing the french through the signing of the paper and the revolver. Daru was constantly reminded of the two sides in Algeria through the revolver and the paper he signed. He tucks it in multiple times to keep the relationship between the him and the Arab neutral.
The snow/blizzard symbolizes the unseen snow from the drought, as in isolation. Daru is never accepted into other places and is exiled > isolation.
Symbolizes individuality/free will. Daru rejects the offer of taking the Arab prisoner to Tungit because he finds it cruel. In the story Daru also lets go/provides shelter for the Arab.
Balducci symbolizes the law/loyalty and how even though Daru in the story does not want to do what the law says, it's loyal and Balducci wants Daru to turn the Arab in. The conflict of the story is internal. Daru vs himself.
Daru has a difficult time deciding if he should deliver the prisoner to Tunguit or let him go free. To do what he wants or the law wants. One must trust himself with the task and the person at hand but must also trust his judgement about the unexpected guest.