A Study In The Imagination And Memory — страница 2

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to them, it had to be paid. But that doesn t speak to the imagination. What really counted was the possibility of escape… (109). Again imagination brings him to a new level of thought. Checking himself, Meursault decides, But I wasn t being reasonable. It was a mistake to let myself get carried away in such imaginings. (110). He could not make this comment if he did not remember being reasonable. He uses his memory to help control his imagination. Even as his imagination grows, he cannot and will not imagine an end other than death. The priest questions Meursault s belief when he asks, …do you really live with the thought that when you die, you die, and nothing remains? Yes, I said (117). Camus shows that no matter how vivid our imagination we are all condemned to die (117).

Camus addresses fate s relationship with imagination when Meursault contemplates that, Did other people s deaths or a mother s love matter to me when we re all elected by the same fate, me and billions of privileged people like him who also called themselves my brothers? … Everybody was privileged. There were only privileged people (121). Imagination is the tool that enables him to make such an observation. Because he can imagine the fate of others, he can also imagine his own fate. Camus argues that part of consciousness is dealing with the impossible odds of fate. Even though superficially it would seem that the court forcing Meursault to confront his past is bad for him, it actually helps Meursault understand his existence. Through the development of Meursault s memory and

imagination, Camus unlocks a vital and vivid element of consciousness. Yet even if the confrontation with his past benefits Meursault, it still leads to his untimely death.