The setting of Camus's story consists both of the physical reality of French Algeria and the psychological milieu, arguably one of terror and alienation, in which all three characters are immersed.
To most readers the weather that has just occurred might seem anomalous for the region's climate, but Camus explains that there has been a drought for months which has been interrupted by a three-day snowstorm. The teacher, Daru, had requested a post in the little town between desert and high plateau where there is endless summer, but instead he has been placed to the north on the plateau itself, where a snowstorm can and does happen. It's thus a physically forbidding environment, especially for the French outsiders.
However, one of the important things, psychologically, is that Daru feels that this is his home, in spite of his being European. It is similar to the mindset of other colonials. Both Daru and the old gendarme Balducci sense the Arab prisoner is hostile to them, though when Daru...
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