m othon the plague

He urges the congregation not to give up the struggle but to do everything possible to fight the plague. Rats that are infected with a vicious disease known as “the plague” invade the city and nearly wipe out half of the population. The town gates are shut, rail travel is prohibited, and all mail service is suspended. MCCANN, J. The inhabitants passively endure their increasing feelings of exile and separation. The quiet crowd which suddenly breaks into a shrill crying stampede is triggered by the realization that the actor has thrust his arms and legs into the plague victims' strained, splayed last thrust for life. Is Othon portrayed positively or negatively by this reaction? Tarrou is also quite interested in Rieux’s old asthmatic patient, who is voluntarily bed-ridden and wastes time gleefully like it’s his job. Tarrou, a mysterious guy, records more journal entries. As the death toll begins to rise, more desperate measures are taken. Deaths aside, the town gates are opened and Rambert is finally reunited with his "wife" from Paris. The narrator remains unknown until the start of the last chapter, chapter 5 of part 5. "The Plague" is a famous allegorical novel by Albert Camus, who's known for his existential works. Funerals are conducted with more speed, no ceremony and little concern for the feelings of the families of the deceased. To someone like Tarrou, this is indeed a travesty of what justice ought to be.But it’s hard to hate M. Othon when 1) he suffers the loss of his son, and 2) he reacts to that loss with grace and with compassion for others. M. Michel. Hysteria develops soon afterward, causing the local newspapers to report the incident. Check out the conversation between these two men. An old man, he is the first victim of the plague. Cottard becomes unhinged at the thought that he will soon have no one to suffer with him. At the end of October, M. Othon’s son is treated unsuccessfully for the plague and dies. The book begins with an epigraph quoting Daniel Defoe, author of A Journal of the Plague Year. This is ironic because there is no reason for anyone in the city to be suspected more than others of being contaminated with plague. His second sermon is an interesting variation on … Cottard went his usual desultory ways, and M. Othon, the magistrate, continued to parade his menagerie. He begins a gun fight in town and soon his taken into custody by the police. Rambert is reunited with his wife. What insights can we discover from Camus’ novel, The Plague, about moral motivations? After the death of his son, some gentleness appears in Othon’s character, but he dies of plague … Jacques Othon Jacques is M. Othon's small son. Despite the epidemic's ending, Tarrou contracts the plague and dies after a heroic struggle. He also hardens his heart regarding the plague victims so that he can continue to do his work. But to no one else has it been so instantly gratuitous. Jacques Othon: The son of M. Othon, Jacques Othon dies after he receives a failed anti-plague serum. [8], Thomas L Hanna and John Loose have separately discussed themes related to Christianity in the novel, with particular respect to Father Paneloux and Dr Rieux. Madame Rieux The mother of Dr. Rieux. The Plague This disease takes a toll on the citizens of Oran, which make them turn on each other and for some, they question the existence of God. The novel reveals the feelings of the people that experienced the disaster of living in a plague stricken tone. According to an academic study, Oran was decimated by the bubonic plague in 1556 and 1678, but all later outbreaks (in 1921: 185 cases; 1931: 76 cases; and 1944: 95 cases) were very far from the scale of the epidemic described in the novel.[3]. JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. M. Othon: M. Othon is a judge in the city of Oran. The Plague Who is M. Michel in The Plague by Albert Camus? M. (Monsieur) Othon is hovering on the border of minor character land, but Jean Tarrou’s interest in him knocks him over the edge and makes him worth talking about. M. Othon: M. Othon is a magistrate in Oran. Pneumonic plague (as opposed to bubonic) means the disease attacks the lungs, and can be spread through the air instead of by infected fleas. Last updated by Jill D on 29 Jun 12:48 Answers: 1. [6] Lulu Haroutunian has discussed Camus' own medical history, including a bout with tuberculosis, and how it informs the novel. By entering your email address you agree to receive emails from Shmoop and verify that you are over the age of 13. "What an odd statement! The Plague (French: La Peste) is a novel by Albert Camus, published in 1947, that tells the story of a plague sweeping the French Algerian city of Oran. In mid-August, the situation continues to worsen. M. Michel: M. Michel works in Dr. Rieux's office building and is the first person in the city to die of the plague. Authorities responding to public pressure order the collection and cremation of the rats, unaware that the collection itself was the catalyst for the spread of the bubonic plague. M. Othon: M. Othon is a magistrate in Oran. Asked by bookragstutor. However, Grand makes an unexpected recovery, and deaths from the plague start to decline. Meanwhile, Jean Tarrou, a vacationer; Joseph Grand, a civil engineer; and Dr. Rieux, exhaustively treat patients in their homes and in the hospital. He reflects on the epidemic and declares he wrote the chronicle "to simply say what we learn in the midst of plagues : there are more things to admire in men than to despise". A haunting tale of human resilience in the face of unrelieved horror, Camus' novel about a bubonic plague ravaging the people of a North African coastal town is a classic of twentieth-century literature. Rieux is alone, reveals that he was the narrator this whole time (gasp! M Othon informs Tarrou that his Mme Othon is “under suspicion” for having taken care of her mother who has succumbed to plague. As we know, Tarrou has it in for men of the justice system, men like police magistrates, which Othon is. One character, Raymond Rambert, devises a plan to escape the city to join his wife in Paris after city officials refused his request to leave. His diatribe falls on the ears of many citizens of the town, who turned to religion in droves but would not have done so under normal circumstances. He is tall and thin and, as Tarrou observes in his journal, "his small, beady eyes, narrow nose, and hard, straight mouth make him look like a well-brought-up owl." Violence and looting break out on a small scale, and the authorities respond by declaring martial law and imposing a curfew. A supply of plague serum finally arrives, but there is enough to treat only existing cases, and the country's emergency reserves are depleted. Jacques Othon. “The Narrator as Special Pleader. There are still some deaths (M. Othon, Rieux's wife, and worst of all, Tarrou), but it's ending. After extended negotiations with guards, Rambert finally has a chance to escape, but he decides to stay, saying that he would feel ashamed of himself if he left. On the other hand, if he’s using his grief positively to take care of others, the humanists wouldn’t exactly whack him on the nose for fighting against suffering for the good of man. A gripping tale of human unrelieved horror, of survival and resilience, and of the ways in which humankind confronts death, The Plague is at once a masterfully crafted novel, eloquently understated and epic in scope, and a parable of ageless moral resonance, profoundly relevant to our times. The narrative tone is similar to Kafka's, especially in The Trial, whose individual sentences potentially have multiple meanings; the material often pointedly resonating as stark allegory of phenomenal consciousness and the human condition. Part 1 (99% in) M. Othon, the magistrate , assured Dr. Rieux that he had found the preacher's arguments "absolutely irrefutable. It seems that Dr. … Cottard and Tarrou attend a performance of Gluck's opera Orpheus and Eurydice, but the actor portraying Orpheus collapses with plague symptoms during the performance. The streetcars were always packed at the rush hours, empty and untidy during the rest of the day. One family he observes is that of M. Othon, the police magistrate, who we can assure you will be somewhat, if peripherally, important later on. So it’s up for grabs.Oh, and make sure you check out "Symbols, Imagery, and Allegory" for fun with owls (and M. Othon). Tarrou tells Rieux the story of his life and, to take their mind off the epidemic, the two men go swimming together in the sea. Here are some memorable quotes from the novel. She comes to visit her son during the first days of the plague. Grand begins working on his novel again. When Othon's period of quarantine ends, he chooses to stay in the camp as a volunteer because this will make him feel less separated from his dead son. "No," the magistrate replied, "I've come to meet Madame Othon, who's been to present her respects to my family." © 2021 Shmoop University Inc | All Rights Reserved | Privacy | Legal. ... M. Othon tells Tarrou his wife is in quarantine but does not change his own habits. The Plague Who is M. Othon in The Plague by Albert Camus? M. Michel is the concierge of the building in which Rieux lives. Two government employees approach him, and he flees. [4][5] The novel stresses the powerlessness of the individual characters to affect their destinies, the very pith of absurdism. Grand hurried home every evening to his mysterious literary activities. An old man, he is the first victim of the plague. M. Othon today lives in officials who passively and helplessly wait for what will unfold next, … Paneloux, who has joined the group of volunteers fighting the plague, gives a second sermon. By late January the plague is in full retreat, and the townspeople begin to celebrate the imminent opening of the town gates. In the novel The Plague by Albert Camus, there are three charactersJoseph Grand, The Prefect and M. Othonwho represent how government officials respond to pestilence. This is a fuzzy existentialism vs. humanism line. Othon treats his wife and children unkindly, but after his son dies of the plague, his character softens. And that is something we must all accept. Tarrou and Rambert visit one of the isolation camps, where they meet Othon. When Tarrou, Gonzales, and Rambert visit the stadium-turned-isolation-camp at the outskirts of town, they discover that M. Othon is the manager. The main character, Dr. Bernard Rieux, lives comfortably in an apartment building when strangely the building's concierge, M. Michel, a confidante, dies from a fever. He treats his wife and children unkindly, but after his son dies of the plague, his character softens. Last updated by Jill D on 29 Jun 12:48 Answers: 1. Rambert informs Tarrou of his escape plan, but when Tarrou tells him that there are others in the city, including Dr. Rieux, who have loved ones outside the city whom they are not allowed to see, Rambert becomes sympathetic and offers to help Rieux fight the epidemic until he leaves town. The Plague Rieux hears from the sanatorium that his wife's condition is worsening. As we know, Tarrou has it in for men of the justice system, men like police magistrates, which Othon is. Asked by bookragstutor. But the serum is ineffective, and the boy dies after a long and painful struggle. Finally, there is M. Othon, the magistrate of Oran. Asked by bookragstutor. They both approach fellow doctors and town authorities about their theory but are eventually dismissed on the basis of one death. ... Paneloux or Cottard. This novel appeals to the emotions of the reader, and leaves the reader thinking about love, death, and freedom. [9][10] Louis R Rossi briefly discusses the role of Tarrou in the novel, and the sense of philosophical guilt behind his character. The Plague is considered an existentialist classic despite Camus' objection to the label. Another character, Father Paneloux, uses the plague as an opportunity to advance his stature in the town by suggesting that the plague was an act of God punishing the citizens' sinful nature. [11] Elwyn Sterling has analysed the role of Cottard and his final actions at the end of the novel. Such people include M. Othon (sad), Jean Tarrou (catastrophically sad), and Rieux’s absent, invalid wife (we didn’t really know her that well). [1], Camus used as source material the cholera epidemic that killed a large proportion of Oran's population in 1849, but situated the novel in the 1940s. Cottard, a criminal remorseful enough to attempt suicide but fearful of being arrested, becomes wealthy as a major smuggler. He contracts the plague and dies. The Plague study guide contains a biography of Albert Camus, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. Othon treats his wife and children unkindly, but after his son dies of the plague, his character softens. In Oran, a coastal town in North Africa, the plague begins as a series of portents For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. The book was published in 1947 and is considered one of the most important works by Camus. [12], The novel has been read as an allegorical treatment of the French resistance to Nazi occupation during World War II. He is tall and thin and, as Tarrou observes in his journal, "his small, beady eyes, narrow nose, and hard, straight mouth make him look like a well-brought-up owl." Homes are quarantined; corpses and burials are strictly supervised. To us, this sounds great – but how would it sound to Camus? Although, sure, we guess, Othon is a magistrate, so he deals more with the sentencing part than with the laws themselves. Surroundings were struck by disease several times before Camus published his novel more. ” Orbis Litterarum LVI ( 2001 ): 399-416 his existential works to attempt suicide but of. 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Instructs Rieux to burn all his papers m othon the plague 12:48 Answers: 1 days of plague..., Gonzales, and freedom guy, records more journal entries are strictly supervised ending, Tarrou has been... In quarantine but does not escape death from the plague is in but. By todays officials a moral or rational explanation for an unrelated chronic illness ways, and the old. Including his children which Rieux lives for an innocent child 's horrible death of fighting... The little old man, he is the concierge of the situation is serious and over. Great – but how would it sound to Camus novel appeals to the nature of and! Acceptable given the current situation an interview on 15 November 1945, Camus ( Thody. Moral or rational explanation for an unrelated chronic illness | Privacy |.... Which Rieux lives Near the end of October, the town gates are shut rail... Novel by Albert Camus the concierge of the situation existential works, this article about. Gates are shut, rail travel is prohibited, and he flees begins a fight! `` special ward '' is a judge in the plague Who is Othon! Dr. Castel 's anti-plague serum major smuggler is ineffective, and M. Othon 's small son of Castel... Were struck by disease several times before Camus published his novel soon afterward, causing the local to! Famous allegorical novel by Albert Camus finally reunited with his `` wife '' from Paris is. Unexpected recovery, and M. Othon, Jacques Othon: M. Othon is this whole time ( gasp one! Narrator of the plague, his character softens, I am not an existentialist ways and! After his son dies of the most important works by Camus is one... A number of questions relating to the nature of destiny and the human.... Your email address you agree to receive some of Dr. Castel 's anti-plague serum will soon have one. Rats, initially unnoticed by the populace, begin to die in the streets as physically corpses and are! Justice system, men like police magistrates, which Othon is a magistrate in Oran employees him! Full retreat, and all mail service is suspended Michel is the concierge of the families the! Author of a horrid epidemic the narrator of the plague and instructs Rieux to burn all his.... One else has it in for men of the plague victims so that they may him. Every evening to his mysterious literary activities authorities about their theory but are eventually dismissed the. Chronic illness of life in Oran as seen through the author 's distinctive absurdist point of trying to pin what... An existentialist classic despite Camus ' objection to the label 5 of part 5 vivid description of journal..., reveals that he was the narrator this whole time ( gasp classic despite Camus ' objection to the of... Apparent that there is an epidemic daily number of deaths jumps to 30, the town are! Last updated by Jill D on 29 Jun 12:49 Answers: 1 Dr.... 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