by Albert Camus
The Fall Theme of Religion
In the world of The Fall, God is dead. The narrator argues that, since we no longer have a God to tell us what to do, we need to find another "master" to replace him. Men have basically taken the place of God, because we are perfectly capable of subjugating and judging one another. Who needs God if we can do it all ourselves? The narrator finds religion to be farcical and hypocritical; we misinterpret, manipulate, and bastardize Jesus’ true intentions, he argues.
Questions About Religion
- We’ve already talked about how Jean-Baptiste is taking on the role of God. And he’s also played (by name) the role of pope. But he makes a big deal out of not lecturing like a religious figure. How can we reconcile these?
- Jean-Baptiste says that the only reason for having God around is for him to guarantee innocence. How does God guarantee innocence? What does religion have to do with guilt?
- When Jean-Baptiste refers to "grace", he first calls it "irresponsibility," but later labels it "acceptance, surrender, happiness." Is grace a positive or negative concept in The Fall?
Chew on This
The Fall agrees with Jean-Paul Sartre’s assertion in No Exit that "Hell is other people."