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The Sun Also Rises - Essay Example

Ernest Hemingway

❶Now go and bring her back.

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The Sun Also Rises

The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose. Hemingway scholar Wagner-Martin writes that Hemingway wanted the book to be about morality, which he emphasized by changing the working title from Fiesta to The Sun Also Rises. Wagner-Martin argues that the book can be read either as a novel about bored expatriates or as a morality tale about a protagonist who searches for integrity in an immoral world. He began writing the story of a matador corrupted by the influence of the Latin Quarter crowd; he expanded it into a novel about Jake Barnes at risk of being corrupted by wealthy and inauthentic expatriates.

The characters form a group, sharing similar norms, and each greatly affected by the war. Brett is starved for reassurance and love and Jake is sexually maimed.

His wound symbolizes the disability of the age, the disillusion, and the frustrations felt by an entire generation. Hemingway thought he lost touch with American values while living in Paris, but his biographer Michael Reynolds claims the opposite, seeing evidence of the author's midwestern American values in the novel. Hemingway admired hard work. He portrayed the matadors and the prostitutes, who work for a living, in a positive manner, but Brett, who prostitutes herself, is emblematic of "the rotten crowd" living on inherited money.

It is Jake, the working journalist, who pays the bills again and again when those who can pay do not. Hemingway shows, through Jake's actions, his disapproval of the people who did not pay up. As such, the author created an American hero who is impotent and powerless. Jake becomes the moral center of the story. He never considers himself part of the expatriate crowd because he is a working man; to Jake a working man is genuine and authentic, and those who do not work for a living spend their lives posing.

The twice-divorced Brett Ashley represented the liberated New Woman in the s, divorces were common and easy to be had in Paris. In Pamplona she sparks chaos: She also seduces the young bullfighter Romero and becomes a Circe in the festival. Nagel considers the novel a tragedy. Jake and Brett have a relationship that becomes destructive because their love cannot be consummated.

Conflict over Brett destroys Jake's friendship with Robert Cohn, and her behavior in Pamplona affects Jake's hard-won reputation among the Spaniards. Although Brett sleeps with many men, it is Jake she loves.

Now go and bring her back. And sign the wire with love. Critics interpret the Jake—Brett relationship in various ways. Daiker suggests that Brett's behavior in Madrid—after Romero leaves and when Jake arrives at her summons—reflects her immorality.

He sees the novel as a morality play with Jake as the person who loses the most. Spain was Hemingway's favorite European country; he considered it a healthy place, and the only country "that hasn't been shot to pieces. It isn't just brutal like they always told us. It's a great tragedy—and the most beautiful thing I've ever seen and takes more guts and skill and guts again than anything possibly could. It's just like having a ringside seat at the war with nothing going to happen to you.

The Hemingway scholar Allen Josephs thinks the novel is centered on the corrida the bullfighting , and how each character reacts to it. Brett seduces the young matador; Cohn fails to understand and expects to be bored; Jake understands fully because only he moves between the world of the inauthentic expatriates and the authentic Spaniards; the hotel keeper Montoya is the keeper of the faith; and Romero is the artist in the ring—he is both innocent and perfect, and the one who bravely faces death.

Hemingway presents matadors as heroic characters dancing in a bullring. He considered the bullring as war with precise rules, in contrast to the messiness of the real war that he, and by extension Jake, experienced. Reynolds says Romero, who symbolizes the classically pure matador, is the "one idealized figure in the novel.

As Harold Bloom points out, the scene serves as an interlude between the Paris and Pamplona sections, "an oasis that exists outside linear time.

The nature scenes serve as counterpoint to the fiesta scenes. All of the characters drink heavily during the fiesta and generally throughout the novel. In his essay "Alcoholism in Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises ", Matts Djos says the main characters exhibit alcoholic tendencies such as depression, anxiety and sexual inadequacy. He writes that Jake's self-pity is symptomatic of an alcoholic, as is Brett's out-of-control behavior.

The atmosphere of the fiesta lends itself to drunkenness, but the degree of revelry among the Americans also reflects a reaction against Prohibition. Bill, visiting from the US, drinks in Paris and in Spain. Jake is rarely drunk in Paris where he works but on vacation in Pamplona, he drinks constantly. Reynolds says that Prohibition split attitudes about morality, and in the novel Hemingway made clear his dislike of Prohibition.

Critics have seen Jake as an ambiguous representative of Hemingway manliness. For example, in the bar scene in Paris, Jake is angry at some homosexual men. The critic Ira Elliot suggests that Hemingway viewed homosexuality as an inauthentic way of life, and that he aligns Jake with homosexual men because, like them, Jake does not have sex with women. Jake's anger shows his self-hatred at his inauthenticity and lack of masculinity.

For example, in the fishing scenes, Bill confesses his fondness for Jake but then goes on to say, "I couldn't tell you that in New York. It'd mean I was a faggot. In contrast to Jake's troubled masculinity, Romero represents an ideal masculine identity grounded in self-assurance, bravery, competence, and uprightness.

The Davidsons note that Brett is attracted to Romero for these reasons, and they speculate that Jake might be trying to undermine Romero's masculinity by bringing Brett to him and thus diminishing his ideal stature.

Critics have examined issues of gender misidentification that are prevalent in much of Hemingway's work. He was interested in cross-gender themes, as shown by his depictions of effeminate men and boyish women.

Brett, with her short hair, is androgynous and compared to a boy—yet the ambiguity lies in the fact that she is described as a "damned fine-looking woman. In keeping with his strict moral code he wants a feminine partner and rejects Brett because, among other things, she will not grow her hair. Hemingway has been called anti-Semitic, most notably because of the characterization of Robert Cohn in the book.

The other characters often refer to Cohn as a Jew, and once as a 'kike'. Cohn is based on Harold Loeb, a fellow writer who rivaled Hemingway for the affections of Duff, Lady Twysden the real-life inspiration for Brett. Biographer Michael Reynolds writes that in , Loeb should have declined Hemingway's invitation to join them in Pamplona.

Before the trip he was Duff's lover and Hemingway's friend; during the fiasco of the fiesta, he lost Duff and Hemingway's friendship.

Hemingway used Loeb as the basis of a character remembered chiefly as a "rich Jew. The novel is well known for its style, which is variously described as modern, hard-boiled , or understated. Scott Fitzgerald told Hemingway to "let the book's action play itself out among its characters. The result was a novel without a focused starting point, which was seen as a modern perspective and critically well received.

Wagner-Martin speculates that Hemingway may have wanted to have a weak or negative hero as defined by Edith Wharton , but he had no experience creating a hero or protagonist. At that point his fiction consisted of extremely short stories, not one of which featured a hero. Maybe a story is better without any hero. Hemingway biographer Carlos Baker writes that "word-of-mouth of the book" helped sales. Parisian expatriates gleefully tried to match the fictional characters to real identities.

Moreover, he writes that Hemingway used prototypes easily found in the Latin Quarter on which to base his characters. Although the novel is written in a journalistic style, Frederic Svoboda writes that the striking thing about the work is "how quickly it moves away from a simple recounting of events. For example, Benson says that Hemingway drew out his experiences with "what if" scenarios: What if I were wounded and made crazy, what would happen if I were sent back to the front?

Balassi says Hemingway applied the iceberg theory better in The Sun Also Rises than in any of his other works, by editing extraneous material or purposely leaving gaps in the story. He made editorial remarks in the manuscript that show he wanted to break from the stricture of Gertrude Stein's advice to use "clear restrained writing. He wrote of Paris extensively, intending "not to be limited by the literary theories of others, [but] to write in his own way, and possibly, to fail.

Mike's money problems, Brett's association with the Circe myth, Robert's association with the segregated steer. Hemingway said that he learned what he needed as a foundation for his writing from the style sheet for The Kansas City Star , where he worked as cub reporter.

Aldridge writes that Hemingway's style "of a minimum of simple words that seemed to be squeezed onto the page against a great compulsion to be silent, creates the impression that those words—if only because there are so few of them—are sacramental. From the style of the biblical text, he learned to build his prose incrementally; the action in the novel builds sentence by sentence, scene by scene and chapter by chapter.

The simplicity of his style is deceptive. Bloom writes that it is the effective use of parataxis that elevates Hemingway's prose. Drawing on the Bible, Walt Whitman and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn , Hemingway wrote in deliberate understatement and he heavily incorporated parataxis, which in some cases almost becomes cinematic.

The syntax, which lacks subordinating conjunctions , creates static sentences. The photographic "snapshot" style creates a collage of images. Hemingway omits internal punctuation colons, semicolons, dashes, parentheses in favor of short declarative sentences, which are meant to build, as events build, to create a sense of the whole.

He also uses techniques analogous to cinema, such as cutting quickly from one scene to the next, or splicing one scene into another. Intentional omissions allow the reader to fill the gap as though responding to instructions from the author and create three-dimensional prose. Hemingway also uses color and visual art techniques to convey emotional range in his descriptions of the Irati River.

Hemingway's first novel was arguably his best and most important and came to be seen as an iconic modernist novel, although Reynolds emphasizes that Hemingway was not philosophically a modernist. Good reviews came in from many major publications. Conrad Aiken wrote in the New York Herald Tribune , "If there is a better dialogue to be written today I do not know where to find it"; and Bruce Barton wrote in The Atlantic that Hemingway "writes as if he had never read anybody's writing, as if he had fashioned the art of writing himself," and that the characters "are amazingly real and alive.

Mencken , praised Hemingway's style, use of understatement, and tight writing. Other critics, however, disliked the novel. The Nation 's critic believed Hemingway's hard-boiled style was better suited to the short stories published in In Our Time than his novel. The few unsad young men of this lost generation will have to look for another way of finding themselves than the one indicated here.

Hemingway's family hated it. His mother, Grace Hemingway , distressed that she could not face the criticism at her local book study class—where it was said that her son was "prostituting a great ability The critics seem to be full of praise for your style and ability to draw word pictures but the decent ones always regret that you should use such great gifts in perpetuating the lives and habits of so degraded a strata of humanity It is a doubtful honor to produce one of the filthiest books of the year What is the matter?

Have you ceased to be interested in nobility, honor and fineness in life? Surely you have other words in your vocabulary than "damn" and "bitch"—Every page fills me with a sick loathing. Still, the book sold well, and young women began to emulate Brett while male students at Ivy League universities wanted to become "Hemingway heroes.

Reynolds believes The Sun Also Rises could only have been written in Cohn represented the Jewish establishment and contemporary readers would have understood this from his description. Hemingway clearly makes Cohn unlikeable not only as a character but as a character who is Jewish. Hemingway's work continued to be popular in the latter half of the century and after his suicide in The characters live in the most beautiful city in the world, spend their days traveling, fishing, drinking, making love, and generally reveling in their youth.

He believes the expatriate writers of the s appeal for this reason, but that Hemingway was the most successful in capturing the time and the place in The Sun Also Rises. Bloom says that some of the characters have not stood the test of time, writing that modern readers are uncomfortable with the anti-semitic treatment of Cohn's character and the romanticization of a bullfighter.

Moreover, Brett and Mike belong uniquely to the Jazz Age and do not translate to the modern era. Bloom believes the novel is in the canon of American literature for its formal qualities: The novel made Hemingway famous, inspired young women across America to wear short hair and sweater sets like the heroine's—and to act like her too—and changed writing style in ways that could be seen in any American magazine published in the next twenty years.

In many ways, the novel's stripped-down prose became a model for 20th-century American writing. Alternately, a book-length work of fiction might start with background, answering those questions before we've had the chance to ask them. Sometimes called exposition, background is information we need in order to fully understand the action of the story. Without it, readers may be unsure of the significance of the scenes they read. They may even lose their way altogether.

An example of a novel that begins with background is Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, the first line of which reads "The family of Dashwood had long been settled in Sussex" — after which Austen describes the circumstances most of them financial leading up to the book's first actual scene. This is perhaps a more logical way to begin a story than the first approach described.

It is also less dynamic and engaging, however. After all, sheer information is never as compelling as action. However he or she begins, somewhere early in any novel an author must introduce the book's conflict that is, the situation wherein the protagonist, the main character, lacks something that is not easy to obtain.

In a way, conflict is story, as we read, consciously or unconsciously, to see if and how the protagonist will get what he or she wants. Will Odysseus arrive home safely to regain control of his kingdom? Will Hamlet kill his uncle, as instructed by the ghost of his father? Will Jane Eyre survive childhood and adolescence?

When offered a story lacking a conflict, most readers lose interest sooner or later, no matter how nuanced the characterization or poetic the description, no matter how sparkling the dialogue or original the style.

Reading a conflict-free novel would be like listening to a piece of music that lacked a melody, or even what musicians call tonality. Or like looking at a painting of. And in fact, this is just the sort of Modern music and art that was being made in the early s, by European innovators like the composer Arnold Schoenberg and the painter Pablo Picasso, when Hemingway was living in Paris and crafting The Sun Also Rises.

Certainly, there was a context for Hemingway's artistic experiment. Yet that by no means assured the book's aesthetic success. The novel contains other structural oddities as well. Like many novels before it, The Sun Also Rises begins with exposition. And yet the background offered in the book's first pages concerns a character who is not even at this novel's exact center. Reading the book for the first time, we assume that Robert Cohn will be our hero, only to discover that he is instead a kind of foil for the story's protagonist — an anti-protagonist if not quite an antagonist.

We never learn this sort of background information about Jake at all — where and how he grew up, much less the specifics of his wartime experiences. Hemingway delays including an actual scene until the book's fourth page. And the aforementioned conflict isn't explicitly stated until the book's fourth chapter, in Jake's apartment, when he asks Brett, "Isn't there anything we can do about it?

The Sun Also Rises opens with exposition on a character other than the book's protagonist about whom we're never offered much background at all , followed by a relatively late introduction of action and then — finally — a conflict, but one that has already been resolved. Two hundred pages remain. Hemingway bombards us with the results of his informal but intensive education in the writing craft. Just as abstract artists, deprived of the tool of representation, must wow us with composition, line, color, and perhaps sheer originality, Hemingway made up for his lack of a traditional story structure by means of characterization, description, dialogue, and style.

From the very first line of The Sun Also Rises , the writer introduces us to characters who are unique and sympathetic, and therefore unforgettable. The novel features not one or two, but five fully three-dimensional figures at its center: They are different enough from each other that there's never any confusion as to who's who, even in scenes featuring nearly all of these characters at once.

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- The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway The Sun Also Rises is a brilliant book written by Ernest Hemingway, that illustrates the decadence during the 's. Throughout the book Hemingway expresses at the time an illegal habit in America, alcoholic drinking.

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The Sun Also Rises essays are academic essays for citation. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway.

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The Sun Also Rises Essays Plot Overview The Sun Also Rises opens with the narrator, Jake Barnes, turning in a short biographical comic strip of his buddy, Robert Cohn. Jake is a veteran of worldwide struggle I who now works as a journalist in Paris. The Sun Also Rises Essay Words | 4 Pages. The Sun Also Rises Mystery Essay Ernest Hemmingway’s novel The Sun Also Rises is not considered to be a mystery. However, through his creative storytelling, Hemingway nimbly evokes an aura of uncertainty and mystique surrounding the relationship of Jake Barnes and Lady Brett Ashley.

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This research paper “The Sun Also Rises” examines the essence of time and a recurring motif in the book. The couples here love each other but the sad thing in the “Sun Also Rises” is that Jake is an incomplete man since a part of him was lost in the war. New Essays on “The Sun Also Rises.” Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, Designed as a critical guide for students of American history and culture, this volume of five commissioned essays is thought-provoking yet accessible to nonspecialist readers.