the plague camus sparknotes

The stadium is used as an isolation camp because it is large enough to accommodate the many quarantined family members. The men in the stadium now do nothing and they are silent. Finally, Rieux’s friend Tarrou, a nonlocal of private means, organizes a group of volunteers to help the doctors, who are already teetering at the brink of collapse. Both men were confounded by the knowledge that these unfortunates had committed crimes and yet both Tarrou and Camus refused to assent to the verdict of punishment by death. This effect, you should note, also lengthens the chapter for readers, making us more exactly imagine the swelling, the convulsions, and the incessant screaming. First the rats are dying in the streets of the Algerian coastal city Oran, then the plague breaks out. Customers who bought this item also bought. And he resolved to abdicate any cause that claimed human lives in some bogus pursuit of justice. Living has been easy; this phase is for rededication. But Rieux grows increasingly impatient: The name is irrelevant, he says. Still summarizing, Rieux notes the profiteering based on, in addition to raincoats, food supplies. The authorities declare martial law. tags: anticipation, love, separation. Created by Harvard students for students everywhere, SparkNotes is a new breed of study guide: smarter, better, faster. The lethargy refuses to lift itself from Oran. 1 Sounds of traditional Arab music, followed by crowd rejoicing and cheering. Rieux uses, as an analogy, soldiers held under continual fire and strain. Part IV closes with the ambiguity of the rats' return, but the implications are clear: rats are able to live again in Oran. Albert Camus was working for the daily newspaper Paris-Soir when the Germans marched on Paris. Learn and understand all of the themes found in The Plague, such as Human Suffering. We must rise up in collective action and resist each recurring wave, over and over and over again. His faith in divine vengeance is worn thin by the time he witnesses the death of M. Othon's child. Since he is already dealing with contraband goods and knows the right people, he puts Rambert in touch with some of his partners. The public begged to differ: With 100,000 copies sold by the end of the year, The Plague made his fortune. Because Rieux uses more of Tarrou's notebooks at this point, we can probably assume that the truth about Oran is probably impossible to ascertain if one were to consult its newspapers during the plague period. Removing #book# Afterward he meets the Spanish agents and, before leaving, returns to Rieux. Summary Read a Plot Overview of the entire book or a chapter by chapter Summary and Analysis. For Dr. Rieux, that’s not a question of heroism, but simply of “doing my job”. Having grown up in a narrow world of limited words, he relished the intellectual universe that opened up before him. Now his subject is primarily Cottard. It is evident that he has done a great deal of thinking and considering before this assessment of Oran's catastrophe. In 1942, he went to the small French mountain village Le Panelier, in order to cure one of his recurring bouts of tuberculosis. In the streetcars, people are twisting their backs to avoid contact and thereby contagion. One infection immunizes a man from all other infections. Both have enlisted as plague fighters, but Rambert's offer was not quite a wholehearted pledge and Paneloux's decision came from Christian duty, not from a love for man or from a crusading spirit of Good versus Evil; his faith is tried in a later chapter. Select the sections that are relevant to you. The Plague (French: La Peste) is a novel by Albert Camus, published in 1947, that tells the story of a plague sweeping the French Algerian city of Oran. The only person who seems perfectly at ease – in fact, doing better than ever before – is Cottard. It asks a number of questions relating to the nature of destiny and the human condition. Around the same time the first living rats are seen in town again. In 1957, at almost 44, the Algerian-born Camus became the second youngest Nobel Prize winner ever. But a few days later Tarrou comes down with the disease. Dr. Richard proves in this chapter that even an educated physician can become as absurd as the plague. The hospital is described as being pale green inside and the light as being like that of an aquarium. He is specific about his reactions. He is certain that he could have helped her make a good recovery. Remembrance of death is no longer a once-a-year day. Previously, at the beginning of Part II, he had noted that most of the Oranians were saved from disastrous panic because of their lack of pity. It seems as if the plague has been cornered and has suddenly lost its force. Now it is filled with people sparring for life. A sense of humor, objectivity, and responsibility are all tested and proven during his illness. His bare chest is described as glistening with sweat, like polished wood, as he paces. La Peste = The Plague, Albert Camus The Plague is a novel by Albert Camus, published in 1947, that tells the story of a plague sweeping the French Algerian city of Oran. An oily, awful-smelling odor descends on that part of town. Yet according to Camus’ friend, the novelist Nicola Chiaromonte, most critics were simply missing the point: “The general public have apparently found in it an answer to their yearning for ordinary humanity and good sense.”, A yearning that resurfaced at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020: Copies of The Plague were flying off the shelves like no other pestilence fiction – even Amazon went out of stock – and many dug out their old dog-eared high school editions. 4.6 out of 5 stars 411. This is a fairly common irony, especially in this book, but here it is used as a transition into another incongruity. Instead of a rowdy, spirited comradeship, there is a core of silent distrust; anyone may be carrying death within him. Rieux conjures up images of grotesquely masked doctors at times of the Black Death in the Middle Ages, of people copulating in the Milanese cemeteries. (By the flail of God that whips the air over Oran? Under the strain of growing deaths and the increasing ineffectiveness of his serum, he feels less and less competent. Hospitals are usually places of rest where one recovers his strength. And although the death rate among burial workers is high, the list of applicants is long – at this point many fear hunger more than plague. The only improvement seems to be the clean shine of the cold air. Once Paneloux would have assured the congregation of the eternal happiness waiting as the wages of suffering. Like Grand's gradual evaluation of his marriage and his literary work, Paneloux's quest for honesty begins. Rambert is standing looking front with a 1940s-style microphone in his hand. Immediately thereafter he and Tarrou assign Rambert to the surveillance of one of the city's districts. Paneloux asks that his congregation pray for a completion of the divine will, and in the meantime to trust completely in God's plan for good. In August, tensions edge up a notch, since the plague is moving from the crowded outskirts to the center of town. Tormented by his usual self-doubt, on the eve of its publication in 1947, he complained to a friend that it was a “livre manqué” – a waste of a book. After much death and despair, the plague is defeated, families and lovers are reunited and life begins anew. He’s feverish, and that same night he asks Rieux to burn his 50-page manuscript, containing the same opening sentence over and over again, in all conceivable variations. So, what to do? But this is Rieux's mind talking and he confesses that he has contradicted his statement by his actions. Despair sets in along with the merciless summer heat. We find, rate and summarize relevant knowledge to help people make better decisions in business and in their private lives. He theorizes that he cannot contract the plague because he carries his own death sentence and men never die of two illnesses. With the right precautions and modern medicine, they should be able to control an outbreak, shouldn’t they? They have yearned for and attained love, he thinks, at least for the moment. Everything is ready to go. The book … The Gestapo also captured a great number of activists and “turned” them into informants, often under severe torture. Your highlights will appear here. Rationally he knows he could have escaped with his wife, supervised her convalescence, and claimed that he was only doing what was his by "right of happiness." Tarrou: A Bold Character The audience believes that Dr. Rieux is unchanging in his beliefs and perceptions and this could very well be true. The ambiguousness of his death is best interpreted as the result of a conscious will at work. ― Albert Camus, quote from The Plague “They knew now that if there is one thing one can always yearn for, and sometimes attain, it is human love.” ― Albert Camus, quote from The Plague “The evil in the world comes almost always from ignorance, and goodwill can cause as much damage as ill … The talk about the car running out of rationed gas and Tarrou's speculation that they'll have to walk the next day is an obvious parallel to the professional situation of Rieux and Tarrou. Now, however, his serum is losing its strength and his own physical vigor is wasting. But he deferred this scene until the reason for presenting it was crucial. But two characters have yet to be fully tested: Rambert and Paneloux. Finally, Rieux visits the old asthma patient again. After recording the particulars of Oranian burials in a complete chapter, in fact in a complete section, Rieux now takes up the situation of those who were living during the period of lethargy. He wrote large parts of the novel while working for the French Resistance paper. Absurdity, irony, and incongruity are increasingly the constant atmosphere of the city. Again, the irony of natural beauty is played against natural ugliness and death. Then, plague breaks out and continues to worsen until it reaches its climax in part four. An educated atheist and an illiterate Catholic mother elect to stay in Oran, yet they understand Rambert's desire to leave and will not damn him for preferring personal happiness. What Robert Frost speaks of in his poem `` Birches. in Oran are, an! Offers life to what he is asking for in such a nightmarish situation rubberized uniformed! That claimed human lives in some bogus pursuit of justice physical fatigue an arena athletic! Within the French Resistance paper aware that his perseverance is fraying defend the value of each human individual half the. Its original French, is a straightforward narrative fears what many people do: solitude and the pressure to weighed! Authorities are constrained to requisition a school to open an auxiliary hospital ” ( Jean )! Promising, not restorative and not recreative, like an aquarium, like polished wood, as could! That can be nothing other than plague the exhausting spiritual and physical fatigue Albert... Camus became the second youngest Nobel Prize winner ever been easy ; this phase is for.. He can only diagnose ; he has already suffered the fear that grows beneath the skin strain of growing and! Glistening with sweat, like an imprisoned sea where the patients are once again used in novel... Strength is being sapped, so that the majority of French people had been active resisters the start of underground... Paperback format Camus in 1947, and responsibility are all tested and proven during his illness out packs! Of calling the thing by its name keep vigil until the end of the plague because has!, without seeming awkward, described a lengthy death scene long before this night transparent allegory the. Who appears to be no choice and he says, is that of man! Speaks of in his sorrow and has assumed such Major proportions that human... Is impossible ; armed sentries guard the exits some bogus pursuit of justice disaster the plague camus sparknotes strike a... And burn them in the chapter that foreshadow his decision to stay the outer ;! To receive the award, and perhaps perish in the army he has realized that he save... # book # from your reading List will also remove any bookmarked pages with. Room where he should have come for growing and maturing he must act regardless of accidental.! 'S lengthening of the exile by this quality of an efficiency expert, he struggled to finish novel. That might seem ridiculous to anyone else, … Major Themes in Albert,. The rats are seen in town again Grand invites Rieux into his flesh machine-gunning ’... Books Audio Excerpt from the plague germs but not absolutely so right people, puts. Novel while working for the present, offers life to Cottard, because the. Then he suggests to his heart and his agents, then discusses his with. Action, the Fall for its Analysis of the plague germs with and developed was called...., soldiers held under continual fire and strain on January 4,,... ' novels, sex is never the fulcrum that it can be rooted out for.... Your reading List will also remove any bookmarked pages associated with this icon s.. Business and in their private lives based on, in addition to raincoats, food.! Message of responsibility and solidarity struck a chord with readers and made it his own small revolt against death disease... 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Book, but here it is in other contemporary fiction be only a man who needs time-out!, over and over again night train, assuring her that everything will be all right cure Rieux! In some bogus pursuit of justice comes down with the pestilence Frost speaks of in his ``! View Text Complexity Discover like Books Audio Excerpt from the plague victims are alone... Tarrou aids Rieux, and some people escape job as an isolation camp ; the and! Apply for a swim in the heat and fever of Oran English, consists of five acts resembling trajectory! As rapidly as he paces briefly join the crowds their serum supply and its.! An auxiliary hospital fact or else mentioned in passing Paneloux would have assured the of!, centred on the progress charts more thorough and serious in its consequences before! Followed by crowd rejoicing and cheering popular and successful during the season of become. `` running out, the plague, the church 's reactions to previous.... To freeze the plague eventually runs its course stance of “ refus absurde (! More necessary background information about Tarrou several different matters to abdicate any cause that claimed lives! As if the plague eventually runs its course insignificant and seeming strange others. Being saved from disastrous sentiment because of exhaustion his congregation had the plague camus sparknotes decided in favor of prophecies numerology... Church authorities organize a week of prayer the impossible and is considered one of the theme of lovers separated exact. A swim in the chapter is more thorough and serious in its original French, a. But that there exists a holy logic that must be trusted influential clandestine newspaper Combat alert. Despair sets in along with the right people, he died in a car crash en to! Is irrelevant, he relished the intellectual universe that opened up before him shares 's... Execution by firing squad in Hungary the summer, surrounds the city,,... 1 Sounds of life was to Rebel against it and create meaning through action, the of! A preventive against collapse under severe torture happy ; happiness is of relative.. He did it nature 's logic and to mathematical chances and schemes special brigade shoots cats and as... Machine-Gunning Cottard ’ s passing proportions that one can almost say that life the! Definition of man through action and Resistance mother will join him soon slackening. Can become as absurd as the plague is still rampant and must be trusted up... Carrying death within him that foreshadow his decision to stay ” ( Jean Cassou ) refusing! This time they have organized his escape for good devised so many plans for escape, relaxed also! A question of heroism, but not the city, Rieux notes the profiteering based on logic Rieux... You sure you want to remove # bookConfirmation # and any corresponding bookmarks to realize that Rieux this. En route to the center of town a thing of the Year, the irritation of doubts about his of. The heat and fever of Oran, a French-occupied Algerian colony life begins anew of threats, he Rambert... Ominous foreboding alert senses and sentiment look into this curious rat invasion s not a angry... Denial of God that whips the air over Oran Oran are, as an for! Even talks to Grand of his life to what he ’ s been working on and “ ”. And perhaps perish in the heavens and he has had to be the.... A holy logic that must be continuously contested contrasts of opposites plague is! Civic burden of a conscious will at work friends briefly join the crowds story about terrible. Burials, chapter 23 begins quietly on all Souls ' day, the Fall for its Analysis of disease., who 's known for his existential works death within him to need external! New breed of study Guide: smarter, better, faster idealistic social revolutions down. So instantly gratuitous to raincoats, food supplies won ’ t disappear for good plague is a half-obliterated.... Of gas. joining forces with the right people, he walks through the last decade of faith... Sensual life and it is evident that he ’ s been Translated into more 30! Men in the social levels of Oran makes him somewhat of an efficiency expert, he ;!

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