In "The Stranger", what is ironic about Mersault's relationship with the chaplain and what is Mersault's view of the afterlife?

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ms-mcgregor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Mersault says he is more certain about his own beliefs that the chaplain is about his. He dismisses the chaplains concern about him because at least he knew the truth and he also knew he was going to die. Camus says, “none of [the priest’s] certainties was worth one strand of a woman’s hair. Living as he did, like a corpse, he couldn’t even be sure of being alive. It might look as if my hands were empty. Actually, I was sure of myself, sure about everything, far surer than he; sure of my present life and of the death that was coming. That, no doubt, was all I had.” So Meursalt understands that he was convicted, not so much because he killed a man, but because he didn't show any remorse at his mother's funeral. And, like Christ whom the priest worships, he dies because no one else understands him. Yet he is not willing to accept the priest's beliefs about anything, including the afterlife.

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The Stranger

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