The Guest Questions and Answers
by Albert Camus

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What aspect of the situation was Camus principally interested in? What are some examples of irony in the story?

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Camus was philosophically enamored with irony. In the story "The Guest," Camus explores the social implications of taking absurd actions that are contrary to your position and how that affects you and your outlook, but he also explores what happens when those actions fail miserably in an ironic twist of fate.

In the story, Daru is pressured by the officer Balducci to turn in the Arab man—whom he releases into his custody. In the first ironic event, Balducci is the one who is truly responsible for taking this man into custody, but he doesn't want to, so he leaves the responsibility to Daru and expects it to happen. Despite shirking his own duty, he is angered when Daru refuses to do his job for him.

Daru, after signing the paper agreeing to turn him in, then refuses to do so; instead, he shelters the man and gives him food and money so that he can escape. The second twist of irony is that the man then chooses to turn himself in—which is legally beneficial to Daru. However, the man's...

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