Solitude in The Guest

May 14, 2008
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Solitude in The Guest



Throughout the short story The Guest, the main character Daru faces isolation and solitude. In the beginning of the story he is faced with physical isolation, living alone on a remote plateau in Algeria leading up to the Algerian war. In the end of the story Daru occupies more of a moral solitude, because of the decision he had to make about the Arab.
Daru’s physical isolation upon the plateau is a negative and positive aspect in his life. Daru lives in a school house where he teaches the young children whom live upon the plateau. Right before the story begins, an unexpected snow storm hits the area leaving the children with time off due to the inclement weather. The snow reminds Daru of the emptiness and the harshness of the region. He even feels alone from man kind, yet remembers that he was born on the plateau and would feel exiled any where else. Although the school house is empty Daru does not mind the peace, and finds a sense of warmth in his solitude. Daru feels self sufficient in the area compared to the starving natives of the plateau. He learns that he is able to survive with the; food, shelter, and warmth he has. Daru proves that although he is alone, he may not feel lonely making his isolation a positive aspect in his life.
The only evidence that Daru shows his physical isolation to be a negative aspect of his life is in the beginning of the story. Daru feels isolated because he could not recognize his friend that was approaching. This could be interpreted as a sign of depression, yet Daru is able to maintain content in his stable environment.
In the end of the story Daru occupies a more of a moral solitude. After failing to act on the Arab’s fate, Daru began to feel disconnected from himself. The moral solitude is clearly represented by the writing on the chalk board. If someone else wrote it shows a clear threat that someone is after him. If he wrote it him self then it shows his despair and alienation from the world.
Throughout the short story The Guest, the main character Daru faces isolation and solitude. In the beginning of the story he is faced with physical isolation, living alone on a remote plateau in Algeria leading up to the Algerian war. In the end Daru is faced with sadness and despair because he doesn’t think that he has made the most moral decision with the Arab.





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