Rieux notices the sudden appearance of dying rats around town, and soon thousands of rats are coming out into the open to die. When coffins start running out, the corpses are flung into death pits and covered with layers of quicklime. The novel presents a snapshot of life in Oran as seen through the author's distinctive absurdist point of view. From now on small notices go up in inconspicuous parts of town, asking citizens to follow decent hygiene rules as well as to report the occurrence of fleas and unusual fevers to the authorities. Soon things get much worse, though. There are shootouts at the gates, and some people escape. That night people go out celebrating in the streets. The path to attain peace, he says, is that of sympathy. Two days later the man is dead. And although the death rate among burial workers is high, the list of applicants is long – at this point many fear hunger more than plague. Rambert finalizes his escape plan, but when he learns that Dr. Rieux is also separated from his wife (who is ill in a sanatorium) he decides to stay and fight the plague. Book Guides ... View on SparkNotes Share. Camus believed that the only way to confront the absurdity and pointlessness of life was to rebel against it and create meaning through action. With the right precautions and modern medicine, they should be able to control an outbreak, shouldn’t they? Still, to him it has proven that, when all is said and done, there are more reasons to admire his fellow human beings than to despise them. Find summaries for every chapter, including a The Plague Chapter Summary Chart to help you understand the book. LitCharts Teacher Editions. One night, Grand invites Rieux into his small apartment and shows him what he’s been working on. Only one of Rieux’s patients, an old asthmatic Spaniard who spends his days moving dried peas from one saucepan to another to keep track of time, seems to take pleasure in the situation: “They are coming out,” he exclaims blithely. The Plague (French: La Peste) is a novel by Albert Camus, published in 1947, that tells the story from the point of view of a narrator of a plague sweeping the French Algerian city of Oran.The narrator remains unknown until the start of the last chapter, chapter 5 of part 5. The concierge M. Michel flat out denies that there could be rats in the building. Get it as soon as Sun, Oct 4. He began to dedicate his life to what he considered – and still considers – state-sanctioned murder. Rieux, meanwhile, walks alone through the celebrating crowds to the outskirts of town, seeing couples passionately embracing each other and their joy. Having spent Christmas 1959 with his wife and children in Provence, he set off for Paris driving a friend’s luxurious Facel Vega HK500. [The Plague] [by: Albert Camus] Albert Camus. Soon after the rat epidemic disappears, M. Michel, the concierge for Dr. Rieux’s office building, comes down with a strange fever and dies. Grand goes through many variations of that phrase, explains the pros and cons of a particular word and concludes by saying that, if only he could get that one sentence right, the rest would all fall into place. To conclude, the Jesuit Father Paneloux preaches a fierce sermon opening with a bang: “Calamity has come on you, my brethren, and, my brethren, you deserved it.” Spiking his words with Old Testament quotes, somber premonitions and harrowing comparisons, he literally puts the fear of God into people – only to commend that they see the light, change their ways and embrace the love of God to atone for their sins. Albert Camus - The plague. Meanwhile Rieux struggles ceaselessly against the plague and is joined by Jean Tarrou, another visitor to Oran, and Joseph Grand, an older municipal clerk who longs for his ex-wife and struggles daily over the first sentence of a book he is trying to write. Father Paneloux, a Jesuit priest, delivers a sermon declaring that the plague is a divine punishment for Oran’s sins. It has been described as 'a metaphysical novel the machinery of which can be compared to a Sophoclean tragedy. Rambert’s wife joins him in Oran, but Dr. Rieux learns that his wife has died at the sanatorium. On June 18, General Charles de Gaulle took to the microphone in a London BBC studio and called on the French people to resist Nazi Germany and the soon-to-be established collaborationist Vichy regime under Marshal Philippe Pétain in the south. Isolated riots are breaking out, and a special brigade shoots cats and dogs as possible carriers of the disease. The next day a health committee convenes. Geared to what today's students need to know, SparkNotes â¦ In November, thanks in part to Castel’s serum, the curve begins to flatten, but the poor don’t have enough to eat, and the mood is turning ugly. Family members, friends and lovers are separated for an unforeseeable future, and all communication with the outside world, except for telegrams, is forbidden. Tormented by his usual self-doubt, on the eve of its publication in 1947, he complained to a friend that it was a “livre manqué” – a waste of a book. Weâve discounted annual â¦ Still, some took the stance of “refus absurde” (Jean Cassou) – refusing to accept the inevitable. Albert Camus, inspired by historical accounts of plague outbreaks and his experience during the Resistance in Nazi-occupied France, answered that timeless question in The Plague: Get up and do something useful together! From now on things improve rapidly. At first, everyone is in denial. The mess starts when rats everywhere die. 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