"Heroic but hardly admirable", how accurate is this assessment of Meursault in "The Outsider"
When Meursault is described to us in the early stages of the novel we see that he does not obey society's codes therefore is it fair for us to assess him using societies interpretation of "heroic"?
If we are to judge him by them then we are given ample examples throughout the novel of his having no compassion or even of his thinking of the consequences of his actions, hardly heroic, but the converse is also demonstrated in many places. An example of the former is when Raymond asks Meursault to "draft" a letter to an Arab prostitute. Meursault knows what will result from his actions but seems unemotional and views the letter as being a favour for a friend and not a vicious conspiracy. This lack of emotion is reinforced when the prostitute is beaten up by Raymond and Meursault remains impartial whilst his girlfriend, Marie, thought it was "terrible" and is sickened by the beating.
Another display of his apathetic views is in the opening lines 'Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday, I don't know' This indicates that either he does not care or he had no comprehension of what had happened. An additional illustration of his detached attitude is after his mothers funeral when he goes to see a humorous 'Fernandel' film with Marie, his girlfriend, and then he takes her home and sleeps with her just hours after his Mothers funeral. This indicates that aswell as having a detached viewpoint that he has no perception of morality. A section of the novel that reinforces this occurs that after the murder when he is in jail; he never mentions the Arab at all; it is as if he does not care about the...