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Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises Essay

1321 words - 6 pages

Isolation, Illusion, and Love: Hemingway
Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises was a book that emphasized what the jazz age was all about. The book was written in 1926 and is about a group of Americans and Brits that travel all over Europe after World War One. This is very similar to how Hemingway lived in the 20’s because he too traveled around Europe in the 20’s when this book took place. In the book a group of friends go to a bull fighting festival. The protagonist is Jake Barnes who is an American journalist living in Paris. In the war he suffered a wound that left him impotent, which means he can’t have sexual intercourse with a woman. Even though he cannot have sex he is in love with an ...view middle of the document...

He beat up Romero but with his injuries he still performed wonderfully in the ring. During the last part of the book, it shows the aftermath of the fiesta when they are sober. Brett has gone to Madrid with Romero and is stuck there so she sends a telegram to Jake who is back in Paris. The novel then ends with Jake and Brett in a taxi speaking of all the things that could have been.
This novel is what the 20’s was all about, drinking sleeping, eating and sex. This way of life keeps evolving from one generation to another. This is what the lost generation is all about. “What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun? One generation passeth away and another gereraton cometh…” from Ecclesiastes. Even though this is not The Sun Also Rises it shows how that generation thought of themselves because they were a post war generation. That is the same way Jake thought because the war is still on his mind because of the wound that haunts him every time he is with Brett. Hemingway does not consider the characters to be a lost generation but a battered group that has been through a lot and is coping with it. The name of the book also shows how this group of people are just trying to find a way out but they only get the illusion that they made it out when they drink and get drunk.
There are two very important scenes in this novel that are very powerful. The first scene is when Jake and Brett are in the cab for the first time. You can see the tension, the love they have for each other but Brett is very scared of that emotion. She truly has cared and still cares for Jake. He too also loves her and expresses it to her. She is scared to get close to a man that is why she only has sex with a man and then tosses them out. Jake wants to be in a meaning full relationship because he cannot just have sex with a woman. It is shown here in this quote even though the quote is from the second time they are in the cab. It still shows how much they wish they could have been together. “Oh Jake," Brett said, "We could have had such a damned good time together."Ahead was a mounted policeman in khaki directing traffic. He raised his baton. The car slowed suddenly, pressing Brett against me. “Yes," I said. "Isn't it pretty to think so?” (Hemingway 251)This makes Jake extremely lonely, lonely enough to just talk to a prostitute. The next scene that is powerful is when Jake spent the five day fishing. This is powerful because with the isolation you can tell he is at peace with himself. He did not...

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