Part One: Chapter 1
Meursault travels to Marengo to hold vigil for his recently deceased mother. On the day of the funeral, the director of the old person’s home introduces Meursault to Thomas Perez, the only resident allowed to attend the funeral. After the funeral, Meursault takes a bus back home, overjoyed by the prospect of a good night’s sleep.
Part One: Chapter 2
Meursault returns home and goes swimming at a public beach where he flirts and eventually spends the night with a former co-worker, Marie Cardona. The following day, Meursault wakes up alone and muses that even though his mother has passed, nothing has really changed.
Part One: Chapter 3
After work the following day, Meursault runs into his neighbor Salamano and his dog. Later, he encounters another neighbor, Raymond Sintes, who is believed to be a pimp and tells Meursault a story about his mistress.
Part One: Chapter 4
Meursault goes swimming again with Marie, whom he has sex with. Marie and Meursault overhear Raymond beating his mistress the next day, and the cops show up and instruct Raymond to wait in his apartment until the police call for him. Meursault agrees to testify on Raymond’s behalf and the two go out, but when they return they find Salamano desperately searching for his dog who has run away.
Part One: Chapter 5
Meursault’s boss offers him a new position at his job, but Meursault doesn’t care and lacks ambition. Meursault continues to display the same nonchalant attitude when Marie asks him if he loves her and if he wants to marry her. When Meursault returns home, he finds Salamano waiting for his dog, and Salamano says that he got this dog after his wife died and does not want to get a new one.
Part One: Chapter 6
Meursault, Marie, and Raymond head to Masson’s beach house. While on the beach, they notice two Arab men, including the brother of Raymond’s mistress, and a fight quickly breaks out, resulting in Raymond getting his arm and mouth slashed. After receiving bandages for his wounds, Raymond intends to shoot the two Arab men, however, Meursault convinces him not to. Later, when Meursault is confronted by one of the Arab men with a knife, Meursault fires the gun and kills him.
Part Two: Chapter 1
Meursault is arrested and thrown into jail for murdering the Arab. Over the course of the eleven-month investigation that ensues, Meursault’s indifference to his mother’s death, the existence of God, and the murder, disgusts his young court-appointed lawyer, as well as the magistrate, who takes to calling Meursault “Monsieur Antichrist.”
Part Two: Chapter 2
Marie visits Meursault in prison and expresses her belief that Meursault will be acquitted, and once he is free they can get married. Meursault, however, is more interested in a mournful prisoner sitting beside him whose mother is visiting. Meursault eventually becomes accustomed to his confinement, sleeping as many hours as possible, and recalling small details from his apartment and thinking about a story about a Czechoslovakian man whose mother and sister committed suicide after accidentally killing him.
Part Two: Chapter 3
When Meursault’s trial begins the following summer, it attracts a great deal of attention, much to Meursault’s surprise. The testimonies of Thomas Perez and the director of the home where Meursault’s mother lived paint Meursault in a negative image in the eyes of the judge. The next testimonies are from Celeste, the owner of the restaurant Meursault frequents, Marie, Masson, Salamano, and Raymond, who all attempt to counter the prosecutor’s accusations.
Part Two: Chapter 4
Meursault and his lawyer are unable to convince the judge that his actions were warranted and that his lack of grief over his mother’s death meant anything. Meursault is thus found guilty of premeditated murder and sentenced to death by guillotine.
Part Two: Chapter 5
While awaiting his execution, Meursault begins to ponder the fact of his inevitable death, considering the possibility of a pardon and freedom. After the chaplain visits, Meursault maintains his disbelief in God and no longer views his impending execution with hope or despair. In the end, Meursault accepts his circumstance.