To existentialists? our world is a universe in which independence, freedom, and choice all play a major role. This further explains the principle that ?Man is nothing else but what he makes of himself.? The Stranger, by Albert Camus reflects this philosophy in many ways.
Mr. Meursault the main character seems to live in his own world, socializing with others, but apathetic about what happens in his life. For example, when his mother died, his thoughts were, “Mother died today. Or, maybe yesterday; I can’t be sure.” (1) He did not have any extreme feelings about her death; he just accepted it and decided that is was destined to happen. He kept himself busy by indulging himself in materialistic comforts like smoking, drinking, and sex. When his girlfriend, Marie wanted him to marry her, he said he would. He explains: “Marie came that evening and asked me if I’d marry her. I said I didn’t mind; if she was keen on it, we’d get married.” (52) He didn’t seem to care one-way or the other. His life was full of existentialism, for he believed that life just happened, nothing you could do would change the future, and that everything happened for a reason.
At the end of the story when Meursault is going to be executed, he pondered his fate. He refused to see the priest before his execution because he felt that he had done nothing wrong when he shot an innocent Arab not once, but five times. He seemed to extricate pleasure from the thought of everyone shouting at him with all the bitterness and hate that had built up inside of them. At the same time, he didn’t seem to worry too much that he was going to be punished by death.