- Created by: Phoebe
- Created on: 22-05-19 17:07
Plot, structure, themes
La Chute vs L'Homme révolté
ZOOM IN: Christian imagery in Chapter 6
The settings and its connotations
1. Current conversation: the dialogue between Clamence and his interlocutor that begins in the ‘Mexico-City’ one evening and concludes just a few days later in Clamence’s room. We are in post-war Europe, most likely in the late forties or early fifties.
2. Clamence’s recent past in Amsterdam: in various rapid allusive comments, the protagonist relates his early days in the Dutch city and his assumption of the role of judge-penitent. It is during this period that the Van Eyck painting appears, first on the wall of the ‘Mexico-City’, then in Clamence’s apartment.
3. Clamence’s life as lawyer in Paris: early days of self-satisfaction as well as the uncomfortable episodes on the bridges of the city. Immediately after 1945.
4. Clamence’s life in prison camp: this episode takes place during World War II after 1942 (we know this because the narrator alludes briefly to the Allies’ occupation of North Africa via ‘Operation Torch’). From this temporal layer subsists only the one crucial remembrance of Clamence as ‘pape’.
5. The theft of the Van Eyck painting: this is an actual historical event that took place in 1934 (the ‘Juges intègres’ panel of the altarpiece was indeed stolen and its unknown location was a matter of speculation for years). Clamence is, of course, not the original thief, but is depicted by Camus as participating in the process whereby the painting remains removed from its rightful place and hidden from public view.