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Mohd Faiz Mohd Zin

The Wall by Jean-Paul Sartre The Wall depicts the story of a prisoner that being trial to execution by fascists. It argues about human’s reaction when their inevitable death has been put on which then switched on the existentialist crisis mode on the characters. The central theme in this short story is about facing an inevitable death. Three characters react differently when facing with existentialist crisis: Pablo, realize the inevitable of death, submitted to it and thus detached himself from life in term of its meaning as if he is already dead. Tom is partially same with Pablo in term of detaching himself as he did not feel when he is urinating on himself. However, Tom avoid to understand his upcoming death by talking with other men and constantly thinking about it. He is in denial mode. Juan, on the other hand, is completely opposite of Pablo where he lets emotion taking over him. At first, he did protests of his innocence but later on he breaks down. Death Wall The knowledge of their upcoming death that lead to different reactions are also one of the idea in Bender’s Death Watch. The realization of being observed by death (read: knowing for certain of their death) transforms people into different reactions. Unpredictability of death is shown where we were all stood against the wall and waiting for the trigger to be pulled. We have been forced to be put on this death wall and in this life we are like waiting for our turn. Death is already within us, watching us and it is either we face it or distract ourselves from it. In The Wall, Pablo and other prisoners have been put into a condition where they must look at the gaze of death. This condition lead to a different choices of reaction of self-transformation. Overwhelmed by emotions, some defeated and some flee. Certain people

simply because we were going to die together. in a way I was calm. the idea of cell in this story is similar to Sartre’s No Exit’s idea of confined room in hell. Pablo. I had listened to him.” While they are different initially. Physical confinement in both of them represents a detachment from life and in dealing with death is like living in the confinement that makes it impossible to escape. Tom. I had spoken to him and I knew we had nothing in common.” The same thought occurred with the suicidal one in Death Watch when he shaved and blood profusely out spelled ‘mortal’. “. This is a natural reaction for people .several hours or several years of waiting is all the same when you have lost the illusion of being eternal. death has brought them down to the same level and this makes his previous life becoming meaningless. serving them. Pablo made a remark. A loss of meaning is associated to the ignorant of own mortality where Pablo said. The presence of the Belgian doctor is the same as the presence of the butler in No Exit. They have no choice either physically to stay in that room or psychologically their mind is being confined inside a cage. First response when they came from the captured is always a negative one. They are also received hostilely from both the prisoners and the sinners.. and are different from the prisoners. And now we looked as much alike as twin brothers. Confinement and The Ever-Watchful Interestingly. So. for Pablo. and Juan already taste a glimpse of the torture in Sartre’s hell.Mohd Faiz Mohd Zin like Pablo changed drastically into an absurdist. in which the butler as a torturer and the Belgian doctor being is described as ‘aren't here on an errand of mercy‘. “for the past 24 hours I had lived next to Tom. They both is like spectators. I clung to nothing. he unable to find any inherent value and meaning of life. After conscious of his upcoming death..

to feel that I was going to die.Mohd Faiz Mohd Zin who are being captured. The problem is that we can only wait for it to take our lives. it feels like death is already there staring at us. lines are still drawn between them. This point is quite different with Sartre’s hell because hell is already eternity and their torture involved the constant presence of other people. the lamp. This is the same case with Bender’s men when they started to view cows as differently according to different type of characters. their view of things have also changed. Things started to change or lose their meaning. While between the watcher and the captured looks similar to each other. It was enough for me to look at the bench. less dense than usual. They realized deeply in their heart that they were deserved to be there although character like Estelle and Juan try to protests for their innocence.’ This is like Heidegger’s interpretation of things where the meaning of an object’s existence can inherently changed with our perception of life. Tom’s fear to touch the objects because of the prospect that he might become a ghost where his hand would go through the objects. The Belgian doctor is distinguished as something alive compared with them as already being dead and the butler’s no eyebrow already tells about him. Things that have been taken for granted now feels different after they received the news of their death. This is due to his reaction to suppress his fear by . Butler’s no eyebrow and the intense observations from the doctor indicates that they are being watched by a different entity from them. Tom began to stare at the bench and touched the wood cautiously and shuddered while Pablo has different way of looking which he ‘found that objects had a funny look: they were more obliterated. Relation with Things After their realization of their impending death. This idea of being watched indicates that once we realize about our impending death. the pile of coal dust.

Pablo already alienates everyone around him and dear in his life to face death but only to be delayed when he without even realizing had gives away his friend. However. Therefore. The same with the irony being presented to Pablo. This idea is also being presented in Camus’ The Fall when Clamence met with a more contradictory and puzzling event in his life after the event of passing by the suicide women on the bridge. In my opinion. Pablo and I . Clamence feels a conflict between his ability to define his values with his inability of taking a certain course of action. To avoid truly choosing will manifest the absurdity of life as shown with the captured of Gris. Pablo on the other hand feels a detachment with the objects themselves as he already detached everything from his own life.Mohd Faiz Mohd Zin thinking too much of his own death. both Pablo and Clamence eventually realized that they are trapped in this meaningless life where Beauvoir put as we would eventually be dead but the fact is that we are still alive in this world. Pablo’s telling the soldier about the location is to show that he had chosen to define his own life. Ramon Gris’ hiding place. This irony is another indication of the absurdity of life where he is unable to control everything in his life except for his own values. Absurdity of Life Similar to suicidal man in Bender’s Death Watch where death always toy our lives. He is already dead on the inside. There is no such route of this kind of choice. it is better to be decisive in this life to avoid the cunning plot from death. he tried to develop another option to avoid in truly making a choice which he randomly picked up the hideout of his friend.

I think that The Wall demonstrates how people start to change when they realized about their own death and how they lead their lives by putting aside death as an alien component from them. Even he is not sure of what he is because he cared for nothing. When he discovers this.Mohd Faiz Mohd Zin As Pablo thinks that others are overreacting to their inevitability of death. he is sweating a lot and this occurred for hour where he felt nothing about it. He starts to feel like the character in the Beckett’s Act Without Words I where he starts to give up everything and detached everything. Pablo become alienated even from his consciousness and he bothers nothing that seems important before he being told about his own death. This is what Pablo describes as ‘the illusion of being eternal. This detachment idea can be related with the Borges’ Borges and I. Distinction been made between his body and himself. To conclude.’ . “it was no longer I”. he view this as he is in someone else’s body as he thinks. Not even his girlfriend and best comrade. he feels increasingly inhuman and alienated from other people. Soon. he feels a change in his perception where instead of being cold in the cell.