Wednesday, March 17, 2010
I thought this novel was well written, and Hemingway’s distinctive style of writing helped to portray the story even more. His use of informal diction and simple syntax allows the reader to vicariously live through World War I. One of the overall themes, the relationship between love and pain, can be seen throughout the world today. A man falls in love with a woman, or vice versa, and eventually, through a terrible tragedy, one loses the other. This results in heartache, and they usually never fully move on. What I found to be unique about this story is that Henry does not feel anything after the death of Catherine. He attempts to say goodbye but realizes he has nothing to say and is forced to come to the realization that his love for Catherine did not last throughout the time that they spent together.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
- “Maybe she would pretend that I was her boy that was killed and we would go in the front door and the porter would take off his cap and I would stop at the concierge’s desk and ask for the key and she would stand by the elevator and then we would get in the elevator and it would go up very slowly clicking at all the floors and then our floor and the boy would open the door and stand there and she would step out and I would step out and we would walk down the hall and I would put the key in the door and open it and go in and then take down the telephone and ask them to send a bottle of Capri Bianca in a silver bucket full of ice against the pain coming down the corridor and the boy would knock and I would say leave it outside the door please. Because we would not wear any clothes because it was so hot and the window open and the swallows flying over the roofs of the houses and when it was dark afterward and you went to the window very small bats hunting over the houses and close down over the trees and we would drink the Capri and the door locked and it hot and only a sheet and the whole night and we would both love each other all night in the hot night in Milan” (Hemingway 37-38).
- “We think. We read. We are not peasants. We are mechanics” (Hemingway 51).
Hemingway’s choice of syntax influences the style and tone of the novel. He uses short, staccato sentences to show simplicity, while also using long, run-on sentences to create a more elaborate setting. Hemingway is known for his bare, straightforward prose due to his few adjectives, plain words, frequent repetition, and simple sentences. His use of longer, more complex sentence structures contradicts the style of writing that he is known for while also paving the way to make his tone more apparent, one of disjuncture and alienation. Hemingway feels the need to reinforce the idea that everyone does not need to conform to society, and they all have choices to make when it comes it difficult decisions.
- “’Jesus Christ, ain’t this a goddam war?’” (Hemingway 35).
- “’I saw the son of a bitch throw it’” (Hemingway 122).
- “’It knocked me down and I thought I was dead all right but those damn potato mashers haven’t got anything in them’” (Hemingway 122).
- “’To hell with you,’ said Rinaldi. ‘To hell with the whole damn business’” (Hemingway 174).
- “’I don’t give a damn’” (Hemingway 174).
- “’You can’t do it. You can’t do it. I say you can’t do it. You’re dry and you’re empty and there’s nothing else. There’s nothing else I tell you. Not a damned thing. I know, when I stop working’” (Hemingway 174).
- “’Don’t worry,’ he said. ‘No danger of ¬---,’ using the vulgar word. ‘No place for ---‘” (Hemingway 196).
Monday, March 15, 2010
- Imagery: "They were seventy-sevens and came with a whishing rush of air, a hard bright burst and flash and then gray smoke that blew across the road. The carabinieri waved us to go on. Passing where the shells had landed I avoided the small broken places and smelled the high explosive and the smell of blasted clay and stone and freshly shattered flint" (Hemingway 24).
- Analogy: "I knew I did not love Catherine Barkley nor had any idea of loving her. This was a game, like bridge, in which you said things instead of playing cards. Like bridge you had to pretend you were playing for money or playing some stakes. Nobody had mentioned what the stakes were. It was alright with me" (Hemingway 30-31).
- Simile: "I sat up straight and as I did so something inside my head moved like the weights on a doll's eyes and it hit me inside in back of my eyeballs" (Hemingway 55).
Hemingway's use of rhetorical stategies affects his style of writing. His style is portrayed when he chooses to use extensive details to enable the narrator to appear initially detached from the life surrounding him. This also allows Hemingway to paint a picture of the uncompromising war efforts in the readers mind and allows them to live vicariously through the narrator's experiences of World War I. Hemingway's style of declaritive, terse prose is also used to produce a realistic narrative, moving away from intricate plots and descriptions. For example, the love between Henry and Catherine is elegant but not romanticized and becomes more of a function of existence rather than the primary focus of the novel.