Changes In The Sun Also Rises By Ernest Hemingway

Decent Essays

War Breeds Destruction The outcome and brutality of the Great War causes the change and promotion of many things in Ernest Hemingway’s novel, The Sun Also Rises. Some of the most evident changes the Great War causes are the changes in the traditional roles of men and women and in the promotion in the use of alcohol. Hemingway expresses these changes through the actions of some of the books main characters, most notably Jake and Brett. The novel’s characters perform these taboo and abnormal actions in response to the Great War and the war’s impact on the characters. The Great War changes the traditional roles for Jake because he “got hurt in that war.” (Hemingway 24) The Great War causes Jake to become impotent, and the reader knows of Jake’s …show more content…

Jake’s impotence creates an unfulfilling void for Brett in their past relationship. Brett is not given the proper romantic stimulation that she thinks she requires because Jake is impotent. This to Brett is “hell on earth.” (35) The emptiness Brett experiences on earth because of Jake’s impotence causes Brett to go against what society expects of her. Instead of staying true and loyal to Jake, she runs off with other men. Pedro Romero is an example of one of the men Brett hooks up with. Jake ultimately helps Brett and Romero hook up by “[looking] across at the table” (188) towards Romero. Romero understands Jake’s glaze and approaches Jake and Brett. The final affirmation between Romero, Brett and Jake is evident when Romero “[looks] at [Jake]. It was a final look to ask if it were understood. It was understood all right.” (190) The changed traditional role of women is evident through Brett’s hookups, especially through her hook up with Romero. Instead of being faithful to Jake even though he is impotent, Brett decides to go against societal norms and hook up with other …show more content…

The alcohol allows the characters to forget their problems. “Under the wine I lost the disgusted feeling and was happy.” (150) Jake abuses the alcohol to forget all his troubles which come from his medical injury of impotency. Sadly turning to alcohol never attempts to resolve the troubles of Jake. Much “like certain dinners [Jake] [remembers] from the war”, alcohol did little to deter things from happening, alcohol just made them careless; alcohol allows them to escape their troubles. Not only does the alcohol allow the characters of the novel to forget their problems, the alcohol is a source of destruction for the characters of the novel. Majority of the time when Jake or his friends are under the influence, they end up getting into a fight. These fights can either be physical altercations or verbal altercations. These altercations bring out the worst in the characters. One altercation in particular Jake and his friends project their anger and frustration onto Cohn. Cohn is basically told he is a complete waste and is told he is just like a steer because he follows Brett and Jake. Alcohols uses are for coping and for destruction. This abuse of alcohol is seen as foreign in society. The consumption of alcohol is an occasional thing in society, not a form of therapy for

Get Access