The Sun Also Rises
In Earnest Hemmingway’s, The Sun Also Rises, he tells us the story of the difficulties many of the men faced after World War 1. Before World War 1, a Man was qualified as a Man though a set of expectations and qualities. After the war, when the brave soldiers returned from war they were stripped of these qualities. The war required the men to spend much time hopelessly huddling in trenches and dugouts. Many of the soldiers developed close relationships with one another. Many of these friendships became intimate. During war times the need of food and clothing brought the soldiers to rely on each other emotionally and for domestic support. World War 1 thus feminized the male soldier, revealing a much more sensitive person beneath the uniform. The army permitted no homosexuality, so what happened was the male soldiers still had an intense emotional bond, but they remained nonsexual. After the war and during peace time there still remained an anxiety towards homosexuality and a feeling of inadequacy towards his own male character. In a world changed forever, the male characters in Ernest Hemingway’s, The Sun Also Rises, Jake, Bill, and ______, struggle to face their new role as a men and have a continuous internal battle to prove to themselves that they are the men they were before the war.
The character Jake, is a symbol for the men who have been not only emotionally feminized by the war but also physically feminized by the war. His wound has made him sexually impotent. Since he cannot perform the sexual male function he is no longer a man. Jake is not the only one, most men who came out of war was changed one way or another. Whether it be a “mental” or physical wound they were changed sexually in some way.