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A Farewell to Arms Essay: Changing Perspective of Religion

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Changing Perspective of Religion in A Farewell to Arms


In Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, the main character, Lieutenant Fredric Henry, undergoes a dramatic change in perspective over the course of the novel. It is most interesting to see how the Lieutenant's views on religion change as he becomes more involved in the war.

 

Early in the novel, we are introduced to the Abruzzi. The Abruzzi is a town in Switzerland, of which Henry's friend, the priest, is very fond. His father lives there and it is, for the priest, a place of quiet solitude, religious freedom, and respect. He longs for the day when he can go and do God's work in his hometown: "in my country, it is understood that a man may love God. It is not a dirty joke"(Hemingway 71).  The priest offers Henry a chance to go to the Abruzzi and rest with his father. Henry declines, and instead decides to go to a whorehouse. At their next meeting though, Henry feels remorse about this decision. "I myself felt as badly as he did and could not understand why I had not gone. It was what I had wanted to do...and I ex...


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