The Guestby Albert Camus is relates to a schoolteacher residing in a remoteplateau in the name of Daru. The area having gone through a season ofdraught however experiences a blizzard that leaving everything underthe cover of snow. This keeps away Daru`s pupils.The objective of this paper is to identify what this story is allabout, in essence, the most relevant person in this story and thereason behind it. We also hope to find out the author hoped bysetting up this story like he did.
This piece is full of existentialism as itbrings Albert Camus’ idea of absurd characteristics as well as manyexamples of human choices. The dilemmas that often accompany Daru areviewed as those that Camus faces with regard to the Algerian crisis.In that case, there are quite a number of similarities between Daruand his creator, Camus for instance both of them are French Algerianswho have been exiled due to their choices. The main focused themes inthis story are choice and accountability. The emphasis by Camuscharacteristically of the existentialist philosophy, that a choice isalways there and that the only lacking choice is the failure tochoose. Daru chooses the means by which he will handle Balducci andwhether he will turn in the prisoner the prisoner on the other sidechooses whether to get jailed or be freed. As for accountability as atheme, the necessity of Camus`s philosophy states that everyone is"condemned" to an inevitable yet eventual death, and acertain freedom comes in the event one accepts this. After theprisoner accepted his self-awareness, Daru granted him a freedomchoice or go to jail, however, he realizes that fleeing from theinevitable punishment and goes to jail willingly, thus revoltingagainst the inevitable by choosing his own accord and becomingaccountable for the murder.
Daru makes his own choices regarding hisbeliefs on what is the right thing. It does not become less rightwith the fact that he will be punished for the right thing. Theimportant factor is that people must do what they think is right andshould not worry about other people’s feelings.
Complete neutrality is unattainable is yetanother theme can be withdrawn from this short story and is shown byDaru`s attempt to avoid making a decision In the long run, the Arabmakes the decision on his behalf hence he loses neutrality.
Camus`s beliefs politically, morally, andphilosophically were still developing when he wrote TheGuest, the story neverthelessembodies his viewing of the human condition. Camus concurred withKierkegaard that giving in is not an act, but a human state. He sawthis state of despair coming from isolation from the rest of theuniverse. The Guestcharts Daru`s journey into a moral despair situation against hissolitude’s backdrop.
Freedom as another theme is an integral part ofCamus`s `absurdist` philosophy. In the state of the absurd, Camusobserves an individual`s choosing freedom as something that offersvalue to life. Through freedom of action an individual thus can findmeaning in an otherwise meaningless world. Balducci and Daru’sconversation emphasizes the importance of freedom. Their interactioncovers up a majority of the dialogue in the story, and rotatesprimarily around the delivered orders by Balducci. Daru considers hisfreedom to make his own decision, and Balducci respects Daru`schoice. However, their understanding originates from their politicalaffiliations the Arab`s freedom is a quite thornier issue. Daruseems compelled to give the Arab freedom from the start, as shownwhen he unbinds the Arab`s hands to give him tea.
Daru gave the Arab a choice, was that fair forthe Arab and the society in general or was it an egoisticdemonstration action based on what Daru thought was right, fair orjust. It is not clear why the Arab’s ultimate choice depressed Darudid, and why did neither Balducci nor Daru want to takeresponsibility for another man. In the end the Arab comes out reallyas `the dog` of society as no decision in the entire story was everhis. In that same case, we cannot know if Daru was different
In conclusion, bysetting up the story the way he does, Albert Camus hoped to enlightenhis readers that the power tomake decisions is rested on all societal members. Some predeterminedoutcomes that their actions can’t be predicted by any simple rules.Some men think about decisions yet some just react to theirsurrounding like a glorified plant. Not all men know they possessfree will and understand its meaning. By answering some philosophicalquestions via the use of characters in a vacuum, Camus raises morequestions on the modus operation of the philosopher: not to actuallyfind answers, but to ask questions that will in the end possessrelevant answers inherent in them. His aim can also beconsidered to be one that seeks answers to numerous philosophicalquestions.
Camus,Albert (1957). L`exil et le royaume(in French). Paris: Gallimard. pp. 82–99.