Premium Essay


In: English and Literature

Submitted By kenh
Words 608
Pages 3
“Stranger in the Village” In his essay “Stranger in the Village”, which was written during the trip to Switzerland in
1951. He describes the lives of Africa America and how he found racism to be prevalent in a
Swiss village. It was obvious to see that Africa America were separated from white people in the society. Baldwin’s essay describes his realization about racial discrimination and how it impacts his whole life. This essay not only shows the experiences of Baldwin in the village, but also the complex historical relationship between the “blacks” and “whites”. By looking at Baldwin’s experience of racism and how he deals with it, Baldwin is trying to show us the effects of racism on him and Africa Americans in the community. Therefore he inspires people to change with hope for a good future between the “blacks” and “whites”. Baldwin was not aware that he lived in a racist society until he had experienced it when he traveled to small village in Switzerland. Baldwin describes about his experiences living in the village and how he was able to see the issues of race. He realized that his life was defines by the color of skin in Europe. When he got there the villagers stared at him and treated him like an alien coming from a different world. “From all available evidence no black man had ever set foot in this tiny Swiss village before I came”, it was like villagers have never seen a black man before. The small children were afraid of him, stated to should Neger! Neger! And ran away from him. People are curious about him, about his skin color, his hair, and everything. “I was simply a living wonder,” Baldwin starts to think that the difference between “whites” and
“blacks” doesn’t not only exist in America society, but also around Europe. Baldwin often refers to his emotions when writing about the conflicts between “whites”...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Disillusionment in the Stranger

...In Albert Camus' The Stranger the Meursault is clearly disillusioned of life and two examples of this disillusionment occurred in the instances of his mother's death and an offer to be transferred to another work environment. The novel The Stranger by Albert Camus portrays how Meursault is disillusioned about things that seem to be the most normal basic human concepts of understanding such as his mothers death. With his mother's death, he seemed indifferent at the loss of her life in every way possible. He was so uninterested in her funeral that he remarked the following: "...I can be there for the vigil and come back tomorrow night" (Camus 3). His mother appeared to slow him down. As if he felt he had better things to do. He claimed he never went to visit her in the nursing home because she enjoyed it too much. Nonetheless, he admitted, that the visit "took up my Sunday -- not to mention the trouble of getting to the bus, buying tickets, and spending two hours traveling" (Camus 5). This shows the true lack of care in his mothers death. To further define his insensitivity, Meursault shed not even one tear in this part of the novel; moreover, he expressed no form of sorrow whatsoever. Secondly, Meursault's attitude and reaction toward an offer to be relocated to a Parisian location was a monumental indicator of his insensitivity. One would expect him to accept or decline the offer graciously and respectfully. Meursault proved, again, to be unpredictable when he states,......

Words: 410 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Living with Strangers

...d. 14/9/2011 Essay 1 Living With Strangers The big city. Just the word gives a wealth of associations: The big city is noise and traffic, a lot of life. The big city is the anonymity in the crowd. The place where everything you do is not noted by others. The big cities came as a result of the increasing urbanization after the industrialization in the 1800s when a lot of people moved from the country to the cities to get a job. But the fact that you are now living with hundred thousands or millions of other people creates many challenges. It can especially be a problem how to deal with all the people who you do not know and who you do not manage to get to know. That is exactly the theme the American writer Siri Hustvedt takes up in her essay Living With Strangers published in The New York Times in 2002. The text is built up in three main sections. In the first part Hustvedt tells her personal story about her moving from the country where everyone knows each other and everyone always greets everyone, and to the big city New York where nobody greets each other and millions of people live side by side. She quickly learns the unwritten rule which says something like, pretend like nothing is happening, “It didn’t take long for me to absorb the unwritten code of survival in this town (…): PRETEND IT ISN’T HAPPENING” (line 17-20). Hustvedt quickly captures the reader’s interest by telling this personal story in the beginning because the reader can identify herself with her and...

Words: 931 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

The Stranger: Reflection

...The Stranger Final Reflection One of the main themes in Albert Camus’s The Stranger is that the universe is irrational and life has no meaning. Camus’s writing strongly supports the idea that a person’s life is meaningless and has no structure or real order. Over the course of the novel, the main character Meursault exhibits odd behavior in comparison to that of the other “normal” characters Camus introduces. The character that best relates to the idea of a rational universe is the Magistrate. Meursault first encounter with the magistrate reveals how unemotional and distant from the general principles of society he is. At the beginning of the conversation the magistrate asks Meursault whether he had hired an attorney. His response to the question is, “I said I thought my case was pretty simple.”(pg 63) One would think a normal and rational member of society wouldn’t flat out admit to their guilt. A person who valued there life and freedom would try at any means necessary to avoid imprisonment. In that same first interaction between the magistrate, Meursault displays another odd characteristic. As the meeting is adjourned he thinks of shaking the magistrates hand as if they had just had a formal meeting about something minute and unimportant. “On my way out I was even going to shake his hand, but just in time, I remembered that I had killed a man.”(pg 64) In reality Meursault was a criminal and had killed a man. Here, his thoughts clearly indicate his idea of life having......

Words: 451 - Pages: 2

Free Essay

The Stranger - Mersault as an Outside

...the sea, to sexual desire but is indifferent to any social event. He expresses no sorrow at his mother’s funeral. He admits they had no close relationship and that he did not know his father. When Raymond invited him over and asked to be his friend Meursault said yes because he had no reason to say no. He was indifferent about writing the letter, he was indifferent about getting married and the list goes on. Meursault is the character that goes with the flow and lives in the now. He doesn’t find himself submitting to any of society’s so-called ‘truths’. He doesn’t believe in marriage, doesn’t feel like one has to pretend to be sad when their mother dies etc. This makes him different than everybody else, it makes him a stranger. Alienating Mersault as a stranger is a tool Camus successfully uses to reveal the hypocrisy of society. Alienating him allows the readers to distance themselves from other characters rather than identify with them: That way we are better able to study and criticize our subjects as outsiders too, thus allowing us to think outside of the box. From that perspective, we see a bunch of ‘specialized’ people whether the lawyers, the judge  or the priest all thinking they know the absolute truth but none of them really knows anything. This method thus allows Camus to reveal to, or remind his readers that all truths in the world are man-made. The alienation effect used by Camus also encourages us as readers to develop a rational view of history of cultures......

Words: 569 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

AP Essay 'The Stranger'

...Marlon Straker Ms. Tobenkin AP Literature, Period 1 1 May 2016 The Stranger Essay While Meursault is walking down the beach, he is creating a tension that leads him to the killing of the Arab. By walking down the beach, he is using this to demonstrate his freedom and independence towards the Arabs and the readers. While he is walking down the beach, the Arabs are following him but they are not threatening or doing anything to harm him. But for safety reasons, Meursault decides to take a gun which he uses to kill one of the Arab. When Meursault shoots the Arab, Camus creates a tension that builds onto the climax of the story. “All I could feel were the cymbals of sunlight crashing on my forehead and, indistinctly, the dazzling spear...

Words: 486 - Pages: 2

Free Essay

Hard Boiled Fiction: the Stranger

...Hard-Boiled Fiction 1. Hostile, violent environment. 2. Traditional moral codes don’t work. 3. Isolation and alienation of characters. 4. Distrust in official institutions and values. 5. No commentary, just reporting. 6. Cynical, but honest. 7. Protagonists fight against systems rather than individuals. 8. Male-centered. 9. Apathetic approach to life. Paragraph How the characteristics of hard-boiled fiction relate to The Stranger by Albert Camus can be seen easily throughout the entire story. Knowing that this form of writing was widely popular during that time period where dark fiction promoted readers to dive into a world where conventional attitudes and ways of life were being contradicted. This novel achieves the contradictions of a hard-boiled fictional piece and targets masculinity making it play a large role in the reasoning behind events. Firstly the male centeredness along with the hostile and violent environment typical of hard-boiled fiction is portrayed in The Stranger using the characters of Raymond and Mersault himself both showing different versions of male violence within the environment of the story. Raymond, a domestically violent individual who believes women who cross him deserve beatings as a form of punishment, perfectly sets the brutal theme that later leads into Mersault’s crime of murder. “The sun glinted off Raymond’s gun as he handed it to me.”(Camus 56) Raymond provides the hostile and violent......

Words: 587 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

The Strangers That Came to Town Essay

...The Strangers That Came to Town Essay The story “The Strangers That Came to Town” is primarily a story about freedom. In his short story, “The Strangers that Came to Town”, Ambrose Flack is showing that true freedom is about being accepted. In the beginning of the story Mr. Duvitch and his family couldn’t walk around the town being judged or feeling uncomfortable. This was also a big problem for Mr. Duvitch’s children. They deal with bullying and not being welcomed as well. Although at the end of the story Andy’s family changes things for the Duvitch’s. The town begins to realize that they aren’t as bad as they thought and weren’t actually that different from them. Mr. Duvitch’s and his family were unable to walk in their own town without being judged or feeling uncomfortable. People around the town used call their family the “marked ones”. Some even considered them to be unattractive physically. The Duvitches were the only struggling family in town, it was often embarrassing and irritating to the other people. People who would walk by them on the street used to stop their noses at them. “It followed the Syringa Street Young, meeting him on the street, sometimes stopped their noses as they passed him by- a form of torment all the more acute when Mr. Duvitch had to share it with the children that happened to be with him.” Mr. Duvitch’s was known as untouchable and the other women in the town began to start rumours about Mrs. Duvitch. They only did this......

Words: 839 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

The Hero in Camus’s the Stranger (the Outsider)

...Certain novels include a character who, based solely on his actions, would appear to be evil, but in an in-depth examination, can be seen in a different, more sympathetic light. The character Meursault, in Albert Camus’s The Stranger, is notable for this description. While his murderous crime and indifference to emotions make him seem to be cretinous, his dramatic transformation at the end of the story make us feel for him. When he finally grasps the theme of the book, embracing the “gentle indifference” of the universe, he also grabs our hearts, in becoming an “absurd” hero. To begin, the outside observer of Meursault would find him a distressingly hardened criminal. Most notable, of course, is his cold-blooded murder of the Arab. When he declares that it was “because of the sun,” he is labeled “a monster,” by the prosecutor, and our minds. His other so-called crime is being found guilty of indifference. All throughout the book, Meursault refuses to open any part of his self to the emotional world. “Maman died today. Or maybe yesterday,” symbolizes his lack of regard for the people in his life. Later, when he sheds no tears at the funeral and answers nonchalantly to Marie’s talk of marraige, we come to realize that he is without the vital passion that fuels human existence. So, it would appear that the cards are stacked against Meursault in his initial description to the audience. Yet, Camus manages to add subtle details to the story, which give us a reverse impression...

Words: 769 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Comparing The Stranger And The Enigma Of Kaspar Hauser

...Each individual has distinguishing characteristics that can either separate them from the majority or can place them in the majority. What may seem different may actually be very common with another. Being human in society one must adapt to social norms or be look at as an outcast. Although an induvial may try to adapt to social norms they will always be targeted for not being born normal. In the book The Stranger by Albert Camus and film The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser by Werner Herzog, the main characters Meursault and Kasper Hauser show how individuals can be detached from the world or reality in different stories but have a similarity where they challenge society norms and seen as an outcast. The novel and film display the contrast on how...

Words: 1424 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Pirates Strangers Tides

...Hi,   Disney's latest, P.o.c- on stranger tides, is not an action entertainer as that of P.o.c - at the world's end. But it certainly has all the ingredients to keep you glued to your seats. It's an out and out johnny depp movie, where he carries it all through with ease and his usual, yet different gestures.     The plot of the movie revolves around Spaniards, British and the pirates, who are all set in search for fountain of youth. Even though it sounds same [group of people fighting for a common thing] as the previous ones, the manner in which it is dealt is gripping. As the action sequences are less in this venture, more effort have been put on comedy sequences. This is where Depp has scored immensely. Mentioning about his action sequences, the one which stood out was Depp's escape from king's palace, which was as good as any of the captain's earlier escapes.                   Apart from johnny, other noticeable performances were from Penelope Cruz, Ian Mcshane & Geoffrey Rush. Especially Ian Mcshane, in the role of Black Beard scores all through, starting from his introduction as the captain, till he is fooled to death by depp in the closing moments of the film. This legendary actor proves again why he is a valuable asset to any film. For Penelope Cruz, as Angelica, you can never take this as her best, but still she has essayed her part to perfection as the daughter of Blackbeard.           A new addition to this venture are the appearance of mermaids with......

Words: 369 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

I Spy

...I Spy by Graham Greene Charlie Stowe waited until he heard his mother snore before he got out of bed. Even then he moved with caution and tiptoed to the window. The front of the house was irregular, so that it was possible to see a light burning in his mother's room. But now all the windows were dark. A searchlight passed across the sky, lighting the banks of cloud and probing the dark deep spaces between, seeking enemy airships. The wind blew from the sea, and Charlie Stowe could hear behind his mother's snores the beating of the waves. A draught through the cracks in the window-frame stirred his nightshirt. Charlie Stowe was frightened. But the thought of the tobacconist's shop which his father kept down a dozen wooden stairs drew him on. He was twelve years old, and already boys at the County School mocked him because he had never smoked a cigarette. The packets were piled twelve deep below, Gold Flake and Players, De Reszke, Abdulla, Woodbines, and the little shop lay under a thin haze of stale smoke which would completely disguise his crime. That it was a crime to steal some of his father's stock Charlie Stowe had no doubt, but he did not love his father; his father was unreal to him, a wraith, pale, thin, and indefinite, who noticed him only spasmodically and left even punishment to his mother. For his mother he felt a passionate demonstrative love; her large boisterous presence and her noisy charity filled the world for him; from her speech he judged her the......

Words: 1152 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...captivated by his presence. But next to the Indian, seeming like his friend, stood a white man, dressed in a strange mixture of English and Indian garments. (costume) He was a short man with a face that was wrinkled but not that old. His features indicated great intelligence, as though he had so cultivated his mind that it began to shape his body. It was clear to Hester Prynne that one of the man’s shoulders rose higher than the other, though the man had tried to conceal the fact with a seemingly careless arrangement of his strange clothing. Upon first seeing that thin face and slightly deformed figure, Hester pressed her infant to her breast so hard that the poor child cried out. But Hester did not seem to hear it. (hear it) When the stranger first arrived in the marketplace—long before Hester Prynne saw him—he had fixed his eyes on her. His initial glance was careless, like that of a man accustomed to his own thoughts, who only values the outside world for its relation to his own mind. But soon his gaze became sharp and penetrating. Horror slithered over his features like a fast-moving snake, pausing only for a moment to show its many coils. His face darkened with a powerful emotion which, nonetheless, he instantly controlled with his will. Except for that single moment of emotion, his expression seemed perfectly calm. After a little while, his convulsion became almost imperceptible, until it entirely faded into the depths of his being. When he found the eyes of Hester......

Words: 388 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay


...Albert Camus THE STRANGER THE Stranger By ALBERT CAMUS Translated from the French by Stuart Gilbert VINTAGE BOOKS A Division of Random House NEW YORK 1 Albert Camus THE STRANGER VINTAGE BOOKS are published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. and Random House, Inc. Copyright 1942 by Librairie Gallimard as L’ÉTRANGER Copyright 1946 by ALFRED A. KNOPF, INC. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the publisher, except by a reviewer who may quote brief passages in a review to be printed in a magazine or newspaper. Manufactured in the United States of America. Distributed in Canada by Random House of Canada Limited, Toronto. 2 Albert Camus THE STRANGER Contents Contents ........................................................................................................................ 3 Part One ........................................................................................................................ 4 I.................................................................................................................................. 4 II .............................................................................................................................. 14 III ............................................................................................................................. 18 IV.............................................................

Words: 36514 - Pages: 147

Free Essay


...Blanche’s behaviour toward the poker players and during her bath reflects the way being raped by Stanley has scarred her. Tennessee Williams portrays this through Blanche's body language and the tone of voice she uses At the start of the play, she performs for Stanley’s friends and demands their charm and devotion. By its end, she wants to hide from their gaze and hopes stanley and his companions won’t notice her. Blanche spends much of Scene Eleven in the bath, but the bathing in this scene is different than before, the reason being is because it is an attempt to wash away Stanley’s recent violation rather than her past sexual acts, she took part in with other men. She also bathes to prepare for her imaginary meeting with Shep Huntleigh a man she believes that she is going on a cruise,( she uses him as an escape even though he is a fantasy it represents her needs to escape from her current surroundings, rather than for any real encounter/relationship with a man.) Blanche’s bath in this scene shows her cleansing herself to hide from real danger rather than simply calming her nerves. It is clear that Stanley has destroyed Blanche, although she no longer hopes that reality will prove itself adaptable to her dreams. Blanche’s illusions and deceptions about her past lose reveals the disturbing reality of the Kowalskis (stella and stanley) marriage, but by the end of the scene the marriage proves to be a sort of illusion, based on deception .Williams reason for presenting this...

Words: 621 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Meusaults Change in Character

...After unfortunate events, Mersault, the main character of Albert Camus’ novel The Stranger ends up shooting an Arab man. This leads to him being arrested and spending most of his next summer in a prison cell. Throughout the book Mersault has always been a rather individual character, who doesn’t care a lot about the people surrounding him and doesn’t have a deeply platonic relationship with anyone. He has friends and people around him, but doesn’t really care a lot about his appearance to them or his responsibilities or consequences. In the beginning of the book Mersault’s mother dies of old age, and he is judged for not talking care of her and rather putting her in a nursing home, and furthermore, not knowing her exact age. This however, only comes out later, when he is being prosecuted for murdering the Arab man, when it turns out, that instead of being the observer, Mersault is now the one being observed. He changed after his time in prison by losing his sense of empowerment and being unable to live in the moment and not thing about his future, this lets him realize that he is no longer the observer but rather the one being observed and judged by society. Throughout the whole book Mersault has always been portrayed as the observer of society. The man, who silently sits on his balcony, having a smoke, and watches the pedestrians walk through their life. But after being imprisoned, Mersault doesn’t feel his sense of empowerment anymore due to being in prison and forgetting......

Words: 919 - Pages: 4