Shifting Gender Roles in The Sun Also Rises

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Ernest Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899 in Chicago, Illinois. Hemingway was an American author and journalist. Kemen Zabala author of “HEMINGWAY: A STUDY IN GENDER AND SEXUALITY” states that Hemingway was commonly known for portraying the sterile and disillusioned environment created by the massive human loss of World War I. Perhaps, his exposure to the atrocious nature of war as a Red Cross ambulance driver in the Europe during World War I aided and further influenced his literary capturing of warfare and how it had affected the “Lost Generation”. Hemingway himself popularized this term, it indicates the coming of age generation during World War I. Ashley Torres, author of “Gender Roles Shift in Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises” claims that the “Lost Generation” mirrors the disenchanted and hopeless attitudes generated by the war. Although the war resulted in the loss of millions of men, changing the social and cultural customs, the youths of the “Lost Generation” were “battered but not lost” (Gerald, Kennedy “American Literature Vol. 63” (Jun. 1991), p. 192). As a result, the strict gender roles set by the preceding Victorian era, did not apply anymore, as women now took on many jobs meant for men. With a newfound sense of experimentation, the men and women of the “Lost Generation” could reverse gender roles freely. This paper will analyze the shift in gender roles found predominantly in Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises.

Hemingway’s novel The Sun Also Rises was first published in October of 1926. As a new and enduring modernist novel, it had received mixed reviews upon publication (Gerald, Kennedy “American Literature Vol. 63” (Jun. 1991), p. 187). In this work, Hemingway thoroughly represents the gender experimentation...

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