An Analysis Of Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises

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Inner convictions and personal experiences shape a person’s character, and the result is reflected in his behavior. In The Sun Also Rises, Hemingway introduces Jake Barnes as the main character who confesses that he is a Catholic believer and a war survivor. His friends with whom he associates subject Jake to conflicting inner emotions. Robert Cohn and Michael Campbell strive for the love of Lady Brett Ashley, the only woman Jake has ever loved. Through a series of events, Jake Barnes juggles his outward responses to others, his inner turmoil of conscience, and his love for Brett through his perception of religious beliefs. Initially, Jake’s outward responses never reveal too much of his feelings. He allows Robert and Michael to be…show more content…
When Robert wants Jake to go to South America with him to escape the drama of life, Jake replies, “You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another” (Hemingway 19). Jake explains that since his arrival to Paris from America, he could not escape who he is physically and emotionally. As he readies himself for bed, Jake remarks that it is “easy to be hard-boiled about everything in the daytime, but at night it is another thing” (Hemingway 42). He tries to hold to advice from the Catholic Church which told him, “Not to think about it,” but his thoughts do not listen to that advice (Hemingway 39). Even as he prays in the San Fermin cathedral, Jake’s conscience speaks that he “regretted that I was such a rotten Catholic but realized there was nothing I could do about it” (Hemingway 103). Jake realizes his inability to be a great Christian but does not take action to correct his immediate behavior. He only regrets that he “wished I felt religious and maybe would next time” (Hemingway 103). Jake realizes that some of his inner thoughts were sin and claims revulsion with himself afterwards. For example, Jake likes Mike’s fights with Robert, but later his disgust with himself steals his feelings of enjoyment. He could not decide if morality or immorality causes a person to be sickened afterwards. The fiesta lasts seven days with much dancing, drinking, and noise. The fiesta brings out all of the unusual behaviors, and Jake conceives that “everything became quite unreal finally and it seemed as though nothing could have any consequences” (Hemingway 158). Jake is struggling with the moral degradation that this fiesta brings, even though it proclaims itself to be a religious celebration as

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