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The Sun Also Rises (Forum Locked Forum Locked)
 Ernest Hemingway Message Boards : The Sun Also Rises
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vaidehid
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 9:02pm | IP Logged Quote vaidehid

Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises is a prime example of his unique style and talent. Hemingway is very vague in his descriptions and he rarely drifts from the main focus of his novel. This can be looked at in two opposing ways. One can take the lack of constant description as a fresh feel after the many realist pieces of work we have just finished, but this subtle approach also make it difficult to visualize significant aspects of TSAR such as its protagonist, Jake, which makes the novel difficult to understand. I feel that the understanding of the novel is essential to truly grasp Hemingway and his approach to writing. The understanding will also aid in acknowledging the societal and cultural shifts that occured over the time between modernism and realism.
Turner's poem is a very graphic and stomach-turning piece of work. His grotesque and intriquing descriptions, in my opinion make his writing much more luring and preferable. When reading Turner's work, I can visualize everything from the battlefield to the slightest details of the soldiers and it makes the work that much more exciting when you can feel yourself within an author's story.  
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maudeg
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 9:27pm | IP Logged Quote maudeg

it's definitely important to understand hemingway, but to like him? i wouldn't necessarily say so. that part is obvious though; it applies to everything in literature. i like this novel so far. it reads fast, even though not much may be happening. i like that he used a lot of conversation to keep things going. the characters are interesting, even if he doesn't describe them a lot. i think cohn is hilarious. also, i read that a lot of my classmates think hemingway's descriptions are 'dry' but i don't agree. sure, if you compare turner's poems about war and wounds and death, his descriptions will look dry. but i think hemingway gives us the right amount of info on his characters to keep us reading. a novel can't come out with fifty character analysis(es), no matter how exciting the descriptions are. at least that's what i think.

i think hemingway's an okay writer so far. the subtle things he puts in are too subtle for a student to catch, but if i were a more mature reader i'm sure i would think it was better for sure. as an iconoclast, i think he's not too radical of one. this is based on the definition from dictionary.com. we said in class that he was trying to do something different (he did, i guess?), but i wouldn't think it was that radical.

turner's stuff is very evocative. i'm a heartless piece of crap sometimes though. i have to admit. i have to be in the right mood to sympathize with the subjects of his poems. i can definitely see myself reading his poems and being like, oh boy. (exasperated sigh) haha, no but seriously. his descriptions are insane. i think if i was in the mood, i would have teared when i read the part about thalia really being 10,000 feet away or something like that. when i read his stuff, i easily conjured images in my mind. that's a good thing probably. oh and also, he probably crammed that much in each poem simply because he's writing poetry. i mean if hemingway wrote a poem and he was trying to do what turner did (evoke feelings and images, i think?), i'm sure he would write an equally descriptive and graphic poem, probably evey moreso. but come on, i can't really compare the two. i'm gonna go ahead and not choose a favorite, if that's okay.

i so almost forgot to post before midnight. i was ready to go to sleep 30 minutes ago then decided to get the 25 points. whoo hoo.

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Sindhu K
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 10:33pm | IP Logged Quote Sindhu K


I think it's important to understand what's happening in The Sun Also Rises, especially since we're going to be tested on the novel in a few weeks. Hemingway is one of those authors that you'd find on one of those high school reading lists. I haven't read The Old Man and the Sea, one of his more famous novels, but based on this book, I don't particularly like his style. It's very choppy, and so fast-paced, that you can get lost pretty easily if you zone out for a moment. Personally, I like a bit more description of the main characters, almost so that you can feel like you know the characters personally. It makes the novel more interesting. Maybe he doesn't want us to pay attention to details, so we can get the main focus of the story? Maybe he was too lazy to write descriptions? Maybe he's a simple minded guy? I don't really know. Like Maude said, maybe he's one of those authors we'll appreciate more when we're older.

According to dictionary.com, an iconclast is someone who breaks tradtion and popular ideals. It seems to me that TSAR is very similar to The Great Gatsby. Both are told from first person POV, have love triangles involved, the characters cheat on their lovers, the main characters drink and party a lot, some characters are war veterans, and I'm sure there are some more similarities that just aren't coming to mind at the moment. It seems as though he's not much of an iconoclast if he's story is so similar to F. Scott Fitzgerald's. At least that's what I think.

This Turner guy is crazy. Wow. Such specific details, make it feel like you're there. He's not only describing what Thalia's seeing, but what she's hearing. I liked the "AB Negative" poem better than "Here, Bullet." I can't really explain why I do. I guess it's more appealing, and evokes more sympathy. I'm not really much of a war person. I don't really have much of an interest reading about warfare, but this poem was ok. That part about the "enough blood to cough up and drown in" really stuck out to me. Well, I can't really see how Turner and Hemingway are the same, except for that they talk about war in their writing, and how it deeply affect's one's life. I agree with most of the previous posts that say that Turner is more descriptive than Hemingway. Well, isn't that kind of obvious? I don't know which I like better. It's kind of hard to compare a poem to a novel. I guess I'll have to finish TSAR. It's not a bad book; it's just not a book I'd normally read.

I guess that's all I have to say. Well I hope this is enough writing for 25 points.
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Mike N
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 10:40pm | IP Logged Quote Mike N

I personally do not believe that it is important to like or understand this novel. I see it as another "Great Gatsby" and both were dull and boring causing me to not like either. As for understanding them, since they're both fiction, there's not much history behind either to really be necessary to understand anymore or less than the next fiction book. They may have a few good values in them but I feel that the price of having to read books like these is not worth the values gained, especially ones that are already commonly known like money corrupts. As for Hemingway as a writer, I don't believe that there is anything exceptional about him that would make him differ from any of the mentioned "fab four". He writes just like the other three or at least very similarly not giving him much room to be his own person and be a nonconformist. He as an iconoclast, just like as a writer, doesn't really have anything that sets him apart from the others. Based off of the definition of an iconoclast of what www.m-w.com says, and iconoclast is,  "1 : one who destroys religious images or opposes their veneration
2 : one who attacks settled beliefs or institutions". It may just be me, but I really dont see anything that would set him as an iconoclast other than his rejection of naturalism and trying to go with the other three into a new style of writing.

As for Brian Turner's poetry, I can't easily say he's anything like Hemingway. Turner is a poet while Hemingway is a fiction novelist. They are from two different eras however they have one thing in similar when it comes to their influences, war. Hemingway was influenced by the Spanish Civil War for a few stories he has written and Turner is a war veteran. Other than that, there is very little else left to compare.

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robD
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 10:51pm | IP Logged Quote robD

Well, this is officially my first comment to be posted on a message board, so I beg pardon of all those who are quite savvy at this form of communication. Anyway, I’d best begin so away I go:

 

In my many years of literary analysis, I have never heard anyone declare: “I have read a book today! I did not care for it much, nor did I understand any theme presented. I could not even follow the characters on their journey throughout the plot.” It would seem quite silly to read a novel if one did not comprehend or even enjoy the piece of literature. Therefore, I became quite perplexed when originally faced with the question that began this forum. It is without a doubt that the novel The Sun Also Rises was written with a purpose; Hemingway wished to depict the lifestyle of his lost generation, a collection of confused souls carelessly meandering through the rest of their lives in Europe. If one were to miss this basic theme in this work, it should be considered an insult to Hemingway and his entire career. The function of most literary work is to portray a theme to an audience and to totally dismiss this purpose is unacceptable. Though it should be imperative to determine the main focus of the novel or at least have some rudimentary understanding of the author’s standpoint, it is not necessary to enjoy the novel. The writing style of the author or the theme about which the novel was written may not seem appealing to the readers of the present. It really depends on the preferences of the reader.

 

Now I may as well compare the two authors Hemingway and Turner. After perusing the contemporary author’s works, the first quality I noticed was the massive amount of description. It seemed almost as though the poems were bombarded with a barrage of adjectives and metaphoric descriptions. While this may appeal to some, I did not necessary enjoy this style. It seemed as though Turner was holding our hands throughout the entirety of his work. The reader was granted no literary liberty; one could not make personal assumptions about the personality or physical qualities of the characters. It was kind of like: “Here’s this character and his in depth description. Don’t even think about forming your own beliefs about him or feelings toward him. I’ve spent the time to write down all these adjectives. Now shut up.” Well, perhaps it wasn’t quite like this, but still, that is how I felt.

Hemingway, on the other hand, allows his writing to be devoid of any descriptions whatsoever. Instead of prohibiting the thoughts of an individual, he supports a reader and his/her right to formulate his/her own opinions. I believe that Hemingway’s literary philosophy is that more may be said or accomplished with fewer words.

 

Well, that’s pretty much it from me for now. I apologize if I have mentioned something previously discussed.

 

-Rob III



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Nick P
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 10:55pm | IP Logged Quote Nick P

I agree with Mike.

Hemingway just does not have what it takes to be an iconoclast.

1)His style of writing is shared with other authors which makes it less unique

2)He does not express any outstanding or revolutionary ieas within his writings. It is just a story about people looking for something to do.

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victor c
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Posted: 16 November 2005 at 10:57pm | IP Logged Quote victor c

Like all novels, it is of much greater importance and it takes a much higher level of thought to understand and be able to analyze it than to like it. Liking a lieterary work is just a bonus, and sometimes whether you like something can be influenced by whether you understand it or not. With TSAR, Hemingway gives us a novel that is difficult to understand and in my opnion because of that it is difficult to like, but with a bit of patience and insight one can decipher Hemingway's hidden messages, which is what's happening as we read. As the novel reveals itself we dig deeper in between the lines and undertsnad what is not shown in plain text.


   Hemingway is agood writer in my opinion. I especially like his lack of detail and description. It allows the reader to imagine the details, and like some classmates have said previously, what we imagine is not reality, but in fact a much more exaggerated form of the truth. I like it because the point is not to allow the reader to imagine, it is to give him or her a false picture. Hemingway likes to give just enough so that the main focus of the picture can be seen; the background of the portrait is up to us to determine, but since our imagination is limited to fantasy, we are left with a fake. TSAR lacks description because it is irrelevant and without purpose. That is why Hemingway is somewhat of an iconoclast. I feel he deliberately rebels against romantic and realist topics by depicting scenes of partying, drunkness, and sex. In that sense he is an iconoclast. His writing style being direct and to the point is also inconoclastical. It does completely contradict the previous styles of writing and although I enjoyed Whitman and friends, I am enjoying the much wider range of mental freedom Hemingway offers.



   Turner's writing is just like Hemingway's in that it is direct and to the point. THis is obviously the goal of their writings. The difference in these two authors is description. Turner gives us vivid detail, enabling us to see the action within the poem. Hemingway has no desription leaving everything open to our imagination. I personally really enjoyed Turner becuase his writing is like Hemingway's, direct and purposeful, but he describes everything so well that there is no room for imagination.... Your imagination cannot imagine when you've seen what is meant to be seen. That is why Hemingway is so intriguing. He leaves you guessing and imagining, just to let you creat your own nice little picture, and then you wake up from fantasy and realize the cruelty of life and love. i like both authors because their works deal with the sorrows of life and love; Turner yells them at you from word one, while Heminway decieves you with a sugar-coating he later removes just to let you fall into the misery and despair that it reality.

victor

Edited by victor c on 16 November 2005 at 11:02pm
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ariyanb
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Posted: 17 November 2005 at 12:02am | IP Logged Quote ariyanb

I have to say, I actually appreciate and like Hemingway’s style of writing.  It certainly is refreshing after years of reading such authors as Hawthorne and Cooper, both of whom can ramble on for pages and pages without actually saying anything.  That was one extreme, taking ten pages to describe one person; the other extreme is Ernest Hemingway, who completely defies all conventions by writing a book with hardly any descriptions of people or places.  And weighing these two side by side, I think Ernie had the right idea; frankly I don’t really care what people look like enough to want them described.  As long as they talk and progress the story, I’m good; action keeps me interested.  Also, to me Hemingway’s writing more accurately mimics human thought and life.  Life is fast paced and conversation happens without pause for rambling or descriptions.  Agreed, if you zone out for a moment you won’t know what’s going on, but that’s true in real life too.  If I happen to zone out while walking to school, I’ll get hit by a bus or something.  Hemingway purposely makes his works “choppy” or hurried sounding, because it gives it a more “stay on your toes” kind of feel to it.  It truly puts you in the place of the protagonist, because it seems like hes reacting to things that are happening in real time almost.  

Perhaps this is a stretch here, but another possible reason for this lack of flow throughout the novel is the mindset of the main character.  He seems like a guy who’s easily distracted, not quite sure exactly what his goals are, like he’s lost (belonging to the lost generation, ooh the connections, rock on).  After the war, Jake is at a loss for direction; his life is a whirl of drinking, women etc. and he doesn’t really seem the kind to stop and examine the “why’s” to it all.  His desires are very concrete and sudden: go here, do this, talk to her, blah blah.  He seems to be going through the motions of normality, though it is obvious to both the reader and Jake himself that he is still very much haunted by his past.   

I’m not sure if I should even bother comparing Hemingway and Turner; theyre so obviously different.  One guy doesn’t have descriptions, and the other guy spills’em like it ain’t no thang.  Simple enough, no?  But I would still rather read Hemingway, that’s just me.  Maybe I’m just lazy or easily bored (probably  both) but I tend to almost glaze over descriptions after awhile anyway when I read a book, tending to stick to the main storyline.     

Also Hemingway’s way cooler.  Turner basically says “okay here is everything that happened.  Now imagine everything that I just described, word for word.”  Hemingway on the other hand just says “okay I don’t know what I want you imagine exactly so I have no descriptions.  deal”  This grants the reader a great deal of imaginative freedom, as he or she can create a mental picture of the characters based on their actions.  

uhh yeah i'm out

 



Edited by ariyanb on 17 November 2005 at 12:04am


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rolson
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Posted: 17 November 2005 at 12:10am | IP Logged Quote rolson

HEre wE go: fOruM #2:

       In order to see Hemmingway's point, it is imperative to read this novel, but not necessarilly the whole thing. The whole book can be summarized in half the pages. It isn't imperative to know all of the 10000000's of bars they go to; we get it, they like to drink. However, although this book is not one of my favorite reads, it does bring a strong message  about Hemmingway and how he defied the lost generation theme. (See my other input on other forum, wrote a lot on this topic).

      Now, Turner... WOOHOO! Gotta give him props. Although very saddening and graphic to say the least, he told an interesting story of how war has affected him without having to go on and on. Now to compare.

      Well, it is interesting Mrs. Weisgerber brought up the theme of the bullet. (Thanks for the idea btw ) The bullet in Turner's poem is not only the physical bullet that killed so many, and in Turner's mind, is pointless and solved nothing, but just added to the problems of the world, but is also representative of his spirit. This war obviously had an effect on him, as it has on most, and it has stayed with him. The bullets that took down his comrades in war have pierced him as well. He is never going to recover from this, and he is letting it poison his life. Writing this poem was a vent for him to show how much pain he is going through.

      Now Hemmingway is completely opposite Turner's mind set. He has seen the pain as well, but refuses to let it stop him. He is an inspiration to his world, showing that we can overcome the bad times. Let's look back on the dreadful date of September 11. The whole motto was :WE WILL OVERCOME. Well, this is Hemmingway's idea as well. He feels sorrow for what has happened, but instead of letting it ruin him and show his enemies that they have won by tearing him apart, he fights back and proves them wrong. He becomes successful and writes this book to try and steer others from going down this path of endlesss unhappiness by mocking them(characters like Brett, count, Cohn-people who make nothing of themselves). 

         Now, why today, do we not have the same sentiment? Turner is letting Iraq win, showing them that they really did break us. He says in the first poem that bullets are pointless, but in the second, he ends the poem with everyone crying. Hopeful? I think not. This thought process behind Sept 11 has not carried over to the war. People are too angry and saddened with this world and the corruption in it to try and find any good. Many, like Turner, are giving up and allowing the fog of the lost generation to consume them. Now, today's lost generation isn't as extreme. Everyone isn't drunk and being frivalous, but they have stopped caring. They don't vote (we had less than 50% of registered voters vote this recent election) because they don't think it can make a difference. Optimism is no where to be found. Everyone goes to work, comes home, and does the same thing the next day. There aren't many smiling faces during the week, and though work can be apart of it, many are tired of the frontliners of newspapers saying something else that adds to the crime rate.

      Hemmingway's bullet is the fact that everyone has stopped caring. But it doesn't peirce him all the way through. He responds by writing TSAR and criticizing those who have given up. He will not be conquered. Nothing can destroy him. So, do I like Turner's writing better? Most definitely. But, the message being delivered? I'd rather go down fighting like Hemmingway than drop all arms as Turner has done.

 

Ry

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LizE
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Posted: 17 November 2005 at 12:14am | IP Logged Quote LizE

I definately feel that it is more important to understand this novel than it is to like it. Hemingway's purpose wasn't to entertain, it was meant to inform upon and explain the lost generation. Therefore it is not necessary to enjoy it to appreciate it.
As for Hemingway as an iconoclast, I agree with the idea. Though I feel I came to that conclusion more through discussions in class (and specifically the discussion about the coach). In our discussion of the coach scene, where he turns down his 'companion', we compared it to another realist novel where the man in the coach 'takes advantage' of his riding companion. This is one of Hemingway's ways of telling his audience "I am not going to go with the preset mold. I'm breaking away."

Turner's poetry and Hemingway's novel do have several similarities. They are both spawned from experiences in War, Hemingway's is WWI and Turner's is the War on Terror. They both deal with human reaction to the death and inhumanity of war. Both also have little physical description of the characters and much more description of the actions and injuries contained within their works.

I would have had to say that my initial reaction to Turner's poetry is more favorable than my reaction to Hemingway's novel. I like both authors, though I like Turner from the time I read him, where as it takes time and discussion for me to fully appreciate Hemingway.

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