The adulterous woman camus analysis

Where Borges moved towards a metaphysics of hard words to describe metaphysical conundrums, Camus offers soft words as he insists on the manner in which man is overwhelmed by the natural environment.Such a problematic needs not simply descriptive words, the names of trees, rock formations, flora and fauna, but a language that can give emotional specificity to nature’s capacity to work on and obliterate aspects of the self.One of his true and trusted friends, Rateau, gets informed one day that Jonas is losing his talent when someone says, “Well, take my word for it, he’s on the decline…you can’t resist success.He’s finished.” Surrounded by envy, disdain and mediocrity, Gilbert eventually retreats to an attic space, determined to work alone if he cannot produce at all with others around him.Most especially if we think of ‘The Artist at Work’, a story about a painter who becomes increasingly famous and whose popularity extends to intrusions into his own apartment, with friends, artists and creative people regularly visiting to the inevitable eventual detriment of the artistic output.

“She was slipping already into the dark fructifying dream that seemed to caress her inwardly, like the movement of her blood”.What exactly is a “tumultuous happiness “, we might wonder, or a “surge of panting joy”.In ‘The Adulterous Woman’ we notice, “the cold air she was gulping began to glow amidst her shivers,” “the bright air seemed to vibrate around them with a vibration increasing in length as they advanced, as if their progress struck from the crystal of light a sound wave that kept spreading out.” This is often the type of language D. Lawrence would use to try and capture the further reaches of consciousness caught by the intensities of nature.His shoulders were already stiffening when he reached the first streets on the slippery slope.” But he also began to feel “rising within him a surge of obscure and panting joy that he was powerless to name.” “Standing in the darkness, D’Arrast listened…without seeing anything, and the sound of the waters filled him with a tumultuous happiness.” As in ‘The Adulterous Woman’, a white man loses himself to the environment and finds something essential in that loss.Now if critics would sometimes talk of Borges’s hard words, philosophical words, that give his stories an intellectual inevitability, Camus the philosopher who also wrote fiction, nevertheless uses what we might call hyperbolic words; words here that are not hard but strangely soft and indeterminate.

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