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Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Quotes

Quote #1

Maman died today. Or yesterday maybe, I don’t know. I got a telegram from the home: "Mother deceased. Funeral tomorrow. Faithfully yours." That doesn’t mean anything. Maybe it was yesterday. (1.1.1)

Meursault treats his mother’s death with the same casual demeanor with which he will later treat the death of the Arab. How does this compare, though, to the way he will eventually address his own impending death?

Quote #2

That way I can be there for the vigil and come back tomorrow night. I asked my boss for two days off and there was no way he was going to refuse me with an excuse like that. But he wasn’t too happy about it. I even said, "It’s not my fault." (1.1.2)

Considering that death is the linchpin of Meursault’s big revelation at the end of the text, this is a rather casual treatment of the matter. He obviously has a long way to go. 123 pages, to be exact.

Quote #3

She said, "If you go slowly, you risk getting sunstroke. But if you go too fast, you work up a sweat and then catch a chill inside the church." She was right. There was no way out. (1.1.27)

If Meursault initially believes there is "no way out" of the human condition, he later reverses this thinking – it is his own awareness that lets him escape.

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