The Guest Questions and Answers

The Guest

Balducci is a gendarme, or policeman, who has been tasked with transporting a prisoner. This man stands accused of killing his cousin and has spent about a month successfully evading authorities...

Latest answer posted June 1, 2021, 11:39 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Albert Camus was born in Algeria, which is the setting for “The Guest.” The story is told with a third person narrator who tells the story from the school master Daru’s point of view. The time...

Latest answer posted September 23, 2012, 5:12 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In the short story "The Guest" by Albert Camus, Daru is a live-in teacher who stays at an isolated school on a hillside near a village in Algeria. Due to a snowfall, his students have not come to...

Latest answer posted June 15, 2020, 7:19 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Camus' focus in The Guest, as far as moral message or theme goes, ultimately points back to Existentialism. That is, at the core of human existence is its fundamental futility. Everyone dies...

Latest answer posted March 25, 2008, 9:08 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

A story that stands as an example of the dilemmas of colonialism and colonial relationships, "The Guest" has a certain ambiguity to it. For, it seems that no one really wants to deal with the Arab....

Latest answer posted October 2, 2014, 4:37 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In French, the title of this story is "L'hôte," and this word has two meanings when it is translated into English. Firstly, it means the 'guest' and relates directly to the Arab prisoner who is...

Latest answer posted October 10, 2016, 6:53 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

The social and historical context of “The Guest” is French colonial North Africa in the mid-twentieth century. Up until the 1960s, the French had extensive colonies throughout the world, including...

Latest answer posted November 11, 2021, 1:49 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Note the excellent summary of this story's themes at the link provided below. A conflict always brings choices. What choice must Daru make? To follow the French colonial system that insists he turn...

Latest answer posted April 30, 2009, 6:32 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Balducci is a gendarme, or police officer, yet it is important to note that he treats the prisoner he is delivering with a certain amount of kindness. Daru watches as Balducci, his horse, and the...

Latest answer posted May 31, 2021, 12:29 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

The fact that the prisoner is not given a name is important in the story. A name personalizes us, singling us out as individuals. Since the prisoner is not given a name, he assumes more importance...

Latest answer posted November 19, 2010, 1:12 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

The Guest

Camus makes the Arab a murderer to influence the reader's response to the dilemma Daru faces in the story, based upon Camus' political concerns at that time between Algiers and France. The reader...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2010, 11:31 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In Albert Camus's short story "The Guest," Daru lives on the plateau because that is where his schoolhouse is located. The plateau and the schoolhouse serve as a central location between the...

Latest answer posted June 2, 2021, 1:33 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Daru is a schoolmaster in a one-room school in Algeria. The school is located on a hillside somewhere in the mountains. We learn from Balducci that it is 3 kilometers from El Ameur. The school is...

Latest answer posted April 13, 2008, 11:41 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Camus' short story "The Guest," suggests that Daru will receive the following treatment in the end: A little later standing before the window of the classroom the school master was watching the...

Latest answer posted March 25, 2010, 5:31 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

The title, “The Guest,” symbolizes the lack of information available to Daru regarding the Arab, why he is there, and what he has done. Generally speaking, you refer to someone as a guest when you...

Latest answer posted November 11, 2021, 2:30 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In "The Guest" by Albert Camus, Daru is a French-Algerian schoolmaster who has been charged with educating indigenous students according to colonial standards. The sparse details given about his...

Latest answer posted September 27, 2016, 10:39 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

As an Algerian-born Frenchman, Daru finds himself between two worlds. His identity is representative of the paradoxes that come with colonization. He wants to treat the Arabs well. He provides...

Latest answer posted June 2, 2021, 2:53 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In Albert Camus's “The Guest,” Balducci brings Daru an Arab prisoner and the orders that Daru is to deliver him to the authorities in Tinguit. Daru respectfully but firmly declines. Such is not his...

Latest answer posted May 31, 2021, 2:08 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

To answer this question, you need to be clear on what “postcolonial” means. In essence, it means that colonialism is over. So, in the context of this story, Algeria, where “The Guest” takes place,...

Latest answer posted May 15, 2020, 1:51 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

"The Guest" uses vague descriptions of Daru and his surrounding circumstances to emphasize that he is disconnected from the world around him. The characters are necessarily generic, as they serve...

Latest answer posted September 28, 2016, 1:01 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Doris Lessing's decision to begin her story in the third person is an interesting one. The third person description allows the author—or rather, the voice of the story—to view her childhood from an...

Latest answer posted March 11, 2020, 4:23 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

One irony in the story is when the policeman brings the Arab prisoner to the schoolhouse and tells Daru that he must take the prisoner to the main police station and turn him over for a trial....

Latest answer posted November 1, 2008, 11:57 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Besides utilizing the helpful characterizations provided at the eNotes summary, you might begin by examining the context, or setting. Leading up to this conversation, Balducci speaks of "wartime"...

Latest answer posted April 30, 2009, 6:09 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Set in remote Algieria during civil unrest between French colonists and Arab natives, "The Guest" features Daru, a French (in exile) schoolteacher who is host to Balducci, a French gendarme...

Latest answer posted August 14, 2011, 7:59 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Daru is assigned the "official" responsibility to escort a prisoner, an Arab, to the nearby jail. The Arab has been arrested and is to be taken to jail for judgment, sentencing and incarceration....

Latest answer posted September 17, 2010, 1:00 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In "The Guest," the Arab has murdered his cousin. Though the details of this crime are sketchy, Balducci states that the Arab killed his cousin as a result of a "family squabble" in which one man...

Latest answer posted October 10, 2016, 7:14 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

[eNotes editors are only permitted to answer one question per posting. If you have additional questions, please post them separately.] In Albert Camus' ‘‘L’Hote’’ or "The Guest," the theme of exile...

Latest answer posted September 4, 2011, 3:28 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In The Guest, Daru and the Arab prisoner make closely linked choices that determine their futures. The effect of each man's choice is multidirectional as the prisoner's decision to turn himself in...

Latest answer posted September 29, 2016, 12:24 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

While Camus himself did not identify as an existentialist, his works have had a significant impact on existentialism, and there are many elements of this philosophy to be found within "The Guest."...

Latest answer posted September 28, 2016, 2:39 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

One way in which Camus develops the themes of freedom and responsibility in "The Guest" is by showing the intertwined and inevitable nature of both as part of what it means to be human. Daru does...

Latest answer posted September 14, 2013, 1:37 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Albert Camus was familiar with the setting of the story "The Guest." This was his birth place. The time of the story is October in the 1950s on the eve on the French/Algerian War. The specific...

Latest answer posted October 22, 2012, 4:46 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

"The Guest" is set in Algeria, which was at the time a French colony, so there are three groups at play in the story: the Arab Algerians (the arab), the European-Algerians (Balducci), and the...

Latest answer posted September 10, 2009, 4:00 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In "The Guest," Daru is intimidated by guns. When the police officer leaves the gun on the desk for Daru, "just in case" The police officer says, " Of course, you are...

Latest answer posted November 21, 2008, 3:17 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

D. F. Hurley’s “Looking for the Arab:  Reading the Readings of Camus’ ‘The Guest’ adds comentary to these responses.He explains that “traces of powerful Western colonial prejudice against,...

Latest answer posted July 2, 2007, 2:05 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

The Guest

In "The Guest," Daru is brave because he defies both the French authorities and the Algerians and allows the prisoner the existential choice of choosing his own fate. Living on a lonely hillside,...

Latest answer posted September 4, 2015, 5:06 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Albert Camus was born in Algeria. As a young man, Camus worked as a court reporter. He was aware of the problems facing the Algerians in their fight for freedom. Camus' characters are fictitious...

Latest answer posted October 1, 2012, 4:44 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In "The Guest," the prisoner is an arab who is accused of murder. The French gendarme Balducci says: We had been looking for him for a month, but they were hiding him. He killed his cousin....

Latest answer posted September 28, 2010, 8:44 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

The reader is left to imagine what Daru's fate is at the end of this story. Camus simply tells us: "Daru looked at the sky, the plateau, and beyond, the invisible lands stretching all the way...

Latest answer posted February 4, 2008, 11:57 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Daru acts upon his conscience when he does not hand the Arab over to the authorities as the gendarme requests. For, although he is revolted by the man's "stupid crime," Daru believes that to hand...

Latest answer posted August 11, 2016, 1:10 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

The French title, "L'Hote," is more appropriate because it can be translated to mean either the host, or the guest. This story is as much about the host as it is about the guest. The...

Latest answer posted November 1, 2008, 10:43 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In "The Guest," there are two reasons why the conversations between Daru and the Arab prisoner are difficult. First of all, there is a language barrier between the two men. Daru speaks French, for...

Latest answer posted October 10, 2016, 7:55 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Albert Camus's short story "The Guest" is set in French North Africa, where Camus himself grew up. The French had conquered a large part of North Africa in the nineteenth century and, by the time...

Latest answer posted November 13, 2021, 12:30 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Like Albert Camus himself, Daru is a Frenchman born in Algiers. Thus, he is a man somewhat divided; so, when the French gendarme leaves the Arab with him, Daru is ambivalent about what to do;...

Latest answer posted September 25, 2013, 5:43 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In Albert Camus's story “The Guest,” the chickens are a minor detail in the story, yet the author doesn't have to include them at all, so they must have some meaning. Let's explore what that...

Latest answer posted May 28, 2021, 5:30 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Absurdism asserts that the universe is irrational and that attempts to bring order to that irrational world will result in conflict. In this story, Daru desperately wishes to avoid making the...

Latest answer posted May 31, 2021, 3:02 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

At the end of "The Guest," Daru returns to his schoolhouse on the plateau. He has just left the prisoner on the road with the choice to either continue to Tinguit to turn himself over to the police...

Latest answer posted June 2, 2021, 12:32 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Balducci is the gendarme, or policeman, who brings the prisoner to Daru's schoolhouse. Balducci has completed the first half of this transport, and Daru's schoolhouse serves as the midway point in...

Latest answer posted May 31, 2021, 11:52 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

Albert Camus’s “The Guest” offers an unusual story of moral dilemma. The point of view of the story is third person as the narrator relates the story in an unemotional manner avoiding prejudicing...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2012, 3:37 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

The misunderstandings between Daru and Balducci are caused by the directive which Balducci is acting under. Balducci has been instructed to transport the Arab to the schoolhouse and then report...

Latest answer posted July 18, 2015, 1:19 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

The Guest

In Camus's short story, "The Guest," the desolate setting reflects the physical, moral, and emotional isolation of the protagonist, Daru. When Balducci, the "gendarme," arrives on Daru's doorstep...

Latest answer posted April 15, 2007, 11:28 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

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