Hello! This semester lasts only ten weeks, so, consequentially, I’ve selected a book just as short. It is called The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway. I am a huge fan of classical American, Russian, and French (Madame Bovary, my beloved) literature, I just love it and there is no explanation for this kind of love. And, honestly, you can never miss with the classic literature and I’m pretty sure that is why it lives up to its name.
Basically, the short story I’m going to be conducting this semester is also by Ernest Hemingway, so I’ve decided to go ahead and choose a book of his for my Individual Reading. And really, I just adore him and the other authors of the Lost Generation. Another reason is that this book has been sitting on my list for so long, that’s why when the opportunity came up, I took it.
Speaking of the language, it’s simple but special. As you may know, Hemingway’s style of writing is always like that: it’s natural, direct and clear, practically conversational. He also avoids complicated syntax which, for some reason, is refreshing.
So far, I’ve read a few chapters and here is what I’ve managed to pick up from the plot. Shortly, the story follows a group of young Americans as they wander through Europe in the mid 1920s. Obviously, they are representatives of the Lost Generation. The narration is led by a journalist named Jake Barnes who is also a World War I veteran (“I got hurt in the war,” I said. “Oh, that dirty war.”). Jake and his friends live in Paris and sometimes go to other countries. Here rises a topic that I really like which is called Americans in Europe. “He was fairly happy, except that, like many people living in Europe, he would rather have been in America, and he had discovered writing.” I know the author probably meant that after the war Europe was in shambles which made everyone want to leave for America, but in the modern world that would not be the case (just saying). Moreover, I just find this topic engaging.
Anyways, the title of the book is also quite interesting. I’ve done some research and found out that the title “emphasizes the existential condition of the so-called “Lost Generation” of artists and writers of which Hemingway was a part. They felt to be a small and insignificant part of a much bigger world, in which life goes on as before, and where the sun rises each day.” This sounds so tragic and sad. Another idea is that it comes from the epigraph of Ecclesiastes (Old Testament?). “The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to the place where he arose.” The meaning of the epigraph is that one generation fades into another, and the sun will continue to rise, while each generation passes on. I find it so beautiful and am so excited to find out whether it suits the novel. As I’ve mentioned, I love the literary works of that time because for some reason they resonate with me, so, I cannot wait to see what feelings and thoughts this book might provoke.