I'm a layman so please use easy terms or provide references. Thanks!

I understand that Sisyphus is an absurdist exemplar in the sense that he simultaneously realizes the futility of his task and consciously chooses to continue it as a rebellion to the absurd. However, what about another important figure in absurdist literature, Meursault?

He obviously has realized the absurdity of life, social interactions, emotions, morality, and so on, to such an extent that he (probably as a dramatic exaggeration) killed a man without knowing why he did it, and subsequently hardly made attempts to defend his own life.

However, how did he rebel against this absurdity? I don't think he did.

I personally (probably wrongly) consider his choice to be a special variant method of philosophical suicide (as termed by Camus) which does not involve religions: he chooses to become The Stranger, or an objective observer that cares about nobody, be it his enemy (killing the Arab without even knowing why he did it), his loved ones (neglecting his mother and his fiancee), and even himself all the same.

So, is this recommended by Camus? Is it another recommended choice in Absurdism beside rebellion? Or, how would Camus approve or disapprove of Meursault's actions? What about contemporary interpretations of Absurdism and their relation to Meursault's choice?

  • I don't think Camus recommends either rebellion or passivity - he just points the absurdity of either. One moment you live and make plans and the next second an airplane crashes into your office and you die... while your colleague survives, because they were stuck in subway.
    – Roger V.
    Commented Jul 12, 2023 at 6:30
  • 1
    @RogerVadim I remember Camus definitely recommends rebellion, though he simultaneously agrees that rebellion is still absurd (absurd does not equal "not worth doing"). As in "The Myth of Sisyphus", I think? Commented Jul 13, 2023 at 2:36


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