The Plague - Part 1: Chapter 4 Summary & Analysis

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Part 1: Chapter 4 Summary

The police inspector comes to question Cottard with Rieux in attendance. Cottard explains that his reason for trying to commit suicide is "a secret grief."

The inspector asks the doctor about the danger to the town of the fever that is going around, and Rieux answers that he cannot say. As the number of cases increase, he is lancing the abscesses, which ooze a mixture of blood and pus. Most of the victims die. The news that the disease is plague is kept from the townspeople for fear of panic.

Part 1: Chapter 4 Analysis

Much of the emotion of this novel will come from the ongoing account of the inspector; his exchange with Cottard here gives the writer the opportunity to add flesh to this character. Camus is also building on the suspense surrounding Cottard in this chapter. Camus uses suspense, (uncertainty as to...

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This section contains 261 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy The Plague Study Guide
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The Plague from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.