"The Guest' by Albert Camus

Essay by mustajab August 2006

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Albert Camus was a 20th century French novelist and short story author of Algerian descent. Camus purpose in his writing is to write about what he has seen. "The Guest" can be analyzed in regard to three important literary elements which setting, characterization, and conflict.

Alrbert Camus was really influced by growing up in Algeria, and his experiences. He's parents were "semi-proletarian" (Wikipedia pg.1). He moved to France at the age of 25. Cambus had joined the resistance movement during the occupation, after the liberation he became a columnist. In 194 he retired from " political journalism and besides writing his fiction and essays, was very active in theatre as producer and playwright" (Internet source pg.1). He wrote a few important essays and and short stories: "The Myth of Sisyphus", "The Stranger", "The Plague", "The Fall, and "Exile and the Kingdom). Albert Camus died on January 4, 1960.

The short story, "The Guest", has an interesting plot structure. This teacher named Daru is in his classroom watching two men come up a snowy hill. The two men reach the classroom, and Daru sees it is Balducci and a prisoner. Balducci tells Daru that he has brought this prisoner to him and that Daru must take him to the police. The Arab guy is guilty of killing his cousin. Balducci leaves and gives Daru his gun for protection. Then Daru refuses to take the Arab to the police. Balducci gets pissed and tells him he has to because he got orders to do it. Finally Daru agrees and signs a paper attesting to the transfer of the Arab prisoner from Balducci to Daru. Then Daru feeds the Arab guy. They go to sleep and Daru thinks he is trying to escape. But it turns out the Arab...