The Sun Also Rises, 1926

The Two Main Characters

The focus of this story centers around two people. Many critics believe “The Sun Also Rises” is a love story regardless of love never being a focal point. But we can’t help but imagine a fairy-tale romance between our two protagonists. They are Jake Barnes and Brett Ashley.

For women in the 20s, Brett was a very appealing character. She was promiscuous, beautiful and desired by men. Her expressed style and short hair was even mimicked by woman who followed the narrative. Brett and Jake were in love, but due to Jake’s injury from war, they could never satisfy each other physically.

Hemingway’s Iceberg Theory and How it Unfolds

This story is considered a work of art due to how its plot and characters unfold. Most of it’s done by the iceberg theory. This was a huge concept for Hemingway and his writing. In fact, he’s accredited with creating the term in as much as it’s evident he used it.

For example, Jack Barnes, the protagonist has an unforgettable issue. His wound from war. …for one. Many believe that underneath this lies a deeper message. A message about how the war.

How, in this particular instance, World War I disabled America and its people. It stunted their growth and hindered the possibility “propagating” those very things we all seek. Happiness, love and possibly a family.

Why Spain, Paris and Expats

During the book’s era, many felt the effect of World War I and responded in different ways. One of those ways was by traveling abroad to get a slice of life that ran to a different beat. It didn’t hurt that the exchange rates in Paris and Spain were favorable for Americans.

This was an advantage for the artist or writer. In fact, these areas were inhabited by Earnest as he developed his writing career. This was right alongside many other aspiring writers collaborating in the atmosphere, joining each other in the cafés and drinking all night.

Characters and Personification

There were a total of 13 characters that appeared in this novel. All, in some way or another, resembled the people who were actually in the writer’s life.

– Jake Barnes

Jake was a veteran of the War to End All Wars. He didn’t end his term well however. The results of injury during combat left him castrated.

– Robert Cohn

Cohn never fought in the war but instead was a young American novelist. He was simply staying in Paris when he met Jake.

– Bill Gorton

There’s a possibility that Bill Gorton covered the war as he didn’t participate. Nevertheless, he was known a good friend to Jake Barnes.

– Mike Campbell

The Scotsman, Mike Campbell was the jealously of Jake Barnes. Mike was the alcoholic veteran of war who was to marry Brett. Jake’s love.

– Frances Clyne

This was Robert’s fiancée.

– Brett Ashely

The lovely Lady Brett took and stole the hearts of each man in this story. She was English and shared that protagonist’s role with Jake Barnes.

– Pedro Romero

Later in the story, Brett uses her beauty and persuasion to get a young, popular bull fighter to fall in love with her. Pedro Romero was that Spaniard. The end of this relationship was a disaster.

– Edna

This woman was a fling during a chapter where the crew are witnessing a fiesta in Pamplona. The fiesta de San Fermin.

– Harris

During a fishing trip where Bill and Jake bond, they’re joined by an Englishman. Harris is he.

– Harvey Stone

Another writer found in Paris.

– Count Mippipoplous

A rich gentleman who accompanies Brett from time to time while in Paris.

– Montoya

This hotel owner ran a business in Basque country. In Spain.

– Georgette Hobin

The irony of this character is that she was the only woman who accompanied Jake Barnes. She happens to be a prostitute.

Hemingway’s Roman a Clef

Pamplona, Spain is where Hemingway began writing this story.

If you find this ironic, considering the novel took place in Spain, then rest assure that it was intentional. This concept it what’s called a roman à clef. This is when a writer takes on the bold objective of redesigning the people in their real lives as book characters.

This process was so realistic for Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises” that historians find no challenge to “read between the lines.” Earnest even admitted to having fights over a girl just like what occurred in the novel. He was in Spain. …just like what he wrote about Jake and the other characters.

The similarities are unending and yet, we’re still distanced enough from these personalities to get an objective view.

What Critics Say Compared to Later Work

Earnest Hemingway has no shortage of literary recognition in the modern world. Even with a tragic death of suicide. The writer’s name is known whether you’ve read his work or not. Yet, the book that fans claim as one of his greatest received some of the worst reviews.

Even the author’s mother was displeased by the choice of topic and what she called dishonorable taste. The review occurred when she was chastised at her own book club who had nothing but negativity towards the way Hemingway’s characters lived. Regardless of these responses, the book did very well for its time.

It has gone down in history as a classic. From a writer whose name the American people might never forget.

The Fame to Follow

As we say in these times, “The Sun Also Rises” put Earnest Hemingway on the map. It blossomed his career far beyond journalism. Before being recognized as an American novelist, Hemingway wrote to newspapers in the same manner Mark Twain did before being recognized as a story teller.

What came after “The Sun Also Rises” was 14 more published books. That would make “the life” of any writer. These fortunate turns for the author became the basis of an adventure. A life most can only dream of.