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1)What new things are added to the original problem as the novel progresses? ( I mentioned in last classes assignment Chapter 1 that the original problem is that Robert Cohn being treated as a Jew)
The rising action described in chapters 2-10 begins to show the development of a sexual relationship between Robert Cohn and Brett, which culminates in Cohn’s joining the party of friends who are headed to Spain for the bullfighting season. Also as the plot develops, the reader is given several new insights into Jake’s character. We learn that Jake is in love with Brett and that his war injury which has left him impotent is a major problem between he and Brett.
We also learn that Robert Cohn, who has always been somewhat wishy-washy and submissive to the women in his life. His distinction as a Jew has made him naturally defensive and his prowess at boxing and football (and writing and bridge) have given him a combination of an inferiority complex and deep-seated pride. It seems from the action in chapters 2-10 that Jake and Robert Cohn may be headed for a confrontation over Brett.
2)What plot twists or unexpected events happen as the novel goes on?
The biggest plot twist (other than the affair between Robert Cohn and Brett) is the arrival of Michael, the bankrupted gentleman whom Brett professes to be engaged to. His arrival corresponds to the Pamplona trip and also to the affair between Cohen and Brett. Another unexpected event is the deepening and exacerbation of all of the characters’ heavy drinking. Although this may be a sub-plot or sub-text to the main action of the novel, the endless drinking by the characters (including absinthe) plays a big role in the action of the novel.
3)Comment on the style of the novel. Is it easy or hard to follow the events?
The novel is very easy to understand as far as the plot and character relationships are concerned. The narrative is written in a sort of journalistic style with very little descriptive embellishment or unnecessary wordage. The novel is very easy to read, but it expresses certain unresolved issues, like sexuality and the deep boredom of existence where the reader would have to read deeply “between the lines” to fully understand the author’s point. If you are reading “The Sun Also Rises” just for the basic story it is very easy to follow and understand; if you are trying to read for the finer points and Hemingway’s philosophical message, it is more difficult to pin down.
4)Is the language in the novel difficult or easy?
The language of the novel is streamlined and very easy to follow. It is though Hemingway is making a comment on the pretentiousness of intellectuals or in the complication of basic human existence. The repetition of words in the novel follows the repetition of scenes: eat, drink sleep, bullfight; eat, drink, sleep, bullfight…. And the conflicts between the characters are expressed in straightforward language with a preponderance of the verbage being dialogue in the novel.
5)To what age group is the novel aimed?
The novel seems to be aimed at the “thirty-something” crowd, or anyone who feels they are in the prime of their “mature youth.” Two ways of looking at this are: the novel is about the last stretch of youth for its characters and the generation about whom it was written, or the novel is written to and about the merging maturity of its generation and the characteristics in it.
6)Is there a message or main theme emerging in the book? How is it shown?
The message of the novel is somewhat ambiguous, but it seems to be encouraging its audience to live life as deeply and as honestly as they can, reminding readers of the brevity of youth, of life, of existence, and of the eternal nature of love, war, conflict, and happiness.
7)Describe any new characters that are introduced? What is their purpose?……….
The characters of Bill and Michael are aspects of masculinity that are not represented by Jake or Robert Cohn. Michael is a gentleman, not a poser, like Cohn, and Bill is the “everyman” character of the novel, sort of what Jake Barnes might be like without his war injury and his existential angst.