Theme Of In Our Time By Ernest Hemingway

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In Our Time: When Playing the “Macho Man” Leads to Stage Fright Ernest Hemingway’s collection of short stories, In Our Time, portrays multiple examples of men trying to prove their masculinity in exorbitant manners, only to be met with disgrace. Thomas Strychacz points out in his essay, “Dramatizations of Manhood in Hemingway’s In Our Time and The Sun Also Rises” that Hemingway’s male characters’ “…sense of self rests precariously upon the audience’s decision to validate or reject ritual gestures toward manhood,” (Strychacz 247). This concept reoccurs multiple times throughout the book, particularly in Nick Adam’s father and the former fighting champion Ad Francis. In both cases, the men act in extravagant ways as a method to show their dominance, yet when placed in front of a new audience, it leads to their defeat and humiliation. Nick Adams’ father, a doctor, is one of the first characters Hemingway introduces who behaves in an exaggerated way to assert his authority. In “Indian Camp”, we see Nick’s father perform an emergency caesarean section on an Indian woman who had been in labor for several days with a breached baby. In this story, the Doctor is shown as the brave, masculine “hero”. The woman’s screams do not bother him, and he does not notice how gruesome and traumatizing this scene is to his young son. In fact, he finds the experience rather thrilling. Post-operating, it says the doctor “…was feeling exalted and talkative as football players

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