It is a compelling minute experience but one that leaves us to confront the central dilemma: Dr Rieux then takes up the story to offer eyewitness accounts of what happened over one particular spring and summer. It starts with the discovery of a dead rat on a landing. Gradually, the city is infested with rats, people die in vast numbers and, although the medical authorities are in denial, a plague is declared and the city quarantined from the outside world.
In April, thousands of rats stagger into the open and die. When a mild hysteria grips the population, the newspapers begin clamoring for action. The authorities finally arrange for the daily collection and cremation of the rats.
Michel, the concierge for the building where Dr. Rieux works, dies after falling ill with a strange fever. When a cluster of similar cases appears, Dr. Rieux's colleague, Castel, becomes certain that the illness is the bubonic plague.
Rieux are forced to confront the indifference and denial of the authorities and other doctors in their attempts to urge quick, decisive action. Only after it becomes impossible to deny that a serious epidemic is ravaging Oran, do the authorities enact strict sanitation measures, placing the whole city under quarantine.
The public reacts to their sudden imprisonment with intense longing for absent loved ones. They indulge in selfish personal distress, convinced that their pain is unique in comparison to common suffering.
Father Paneloux delivers a stern sermon, declaring that the plague is God's punishment for Oran's sins. Raymond Rambert endeavors to escape Oran to rejoin his wife in Paris, but the city's bureaucrats refuse to let him leave.
He tries to escape by illegal means with the help of Cottard's criminal associates. Meanwhile, Rieux, Tarrou, and Grand doggedly battle the death and suffering wrought by the plague. Rambert finalizes his escape plan, but, after Tarrou tells him that Rieux is likewise separated from his wife, Rambert is ashamed to flee.
He chooses to stay behind and help fight the epidemic. Cottard committed a crime which he does not name in the past, so he has lived in constant fear of arrest and punishment.
He greets the plague epidemic with open arms because he no longer feels alone in his fearful suffering. He accumulates a great deal of wealth as a smuggler during the epidemic. After the term of exile lasts several months, many of Oran's citizens lose their selfish obsession with personal suffering.
They come to recognize the plague as a collective disaster that is everyone's concern. They confront their social responsibility and join the anti-plague efforts.
Othon's small son suffers a prolonged, excruciating death from the plague, Dr. Rieux shouts at Paneloux that he was an innocent victim.
Paneloux, deeply shaken by the boy's death, delivers a second sermon that modifies the first. He declares that the inexplicable deaths of innocents force the Christian to choose between believing everything and believing nothing about God.
When he falls ill, he refuses to consult a doctor, leaving his fate entirely in the hands of divine Providence. He dies clutching his crucifix, but the symptoms of his illness do not match those of the plague.The Plague takes place in a coastal region of North Africa called Oran in or around , shortly after French colonization.
Review on the Plague by Albert Camus We have so large base of authors that we can prepare a unique summary of any book. The Plague (French: La Peste) is a novel by Albert Camus, published in , that tells the story of a plague sweeping the French Algerian city of Oran.
It asks a number of questions relating to the nature of destiny and the human condition. The Plague is Albert Camus’s most successful novel.
It was published in , when Camus was thirty-three, and was an immediate triumph. Within a year it had been translated into nine languages, with many more to come.
Re-reading Albert Camus’ The Plague. First published A classic of world literature. Camus was a hero of the intellectual Resistance; a charismatic advocate of radical social and political change. His allegory of the wartime occupation of France reopened a painful chapter in the recent French past but in an indirect and ostensibly political key.
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