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The Lost Weekend Short Fiction Analysis

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In the novel The Lost Weekend, the author, Charles Jackson uses alcohol to display that the main character Don Birnam is a homosexual. The reader gets to spend six days with Birnam as he drunkenly reminisces on his past, present, and future. Although Charles Jackson does not indicate that Birnam is a homosexual, the details given suggests that Birnam is a homosexual alcoholic who spends most of the novel in gay bars.
In the beginning, the reader meets Birnam who ditches his brother on a trip out of the city. He rather binges drink and visit the local bars, stealing and borrowing money from friends and family, in order to pay the drinks. At the bar Birnam says ““Sam, I’ll have one more rye.” To celebrate, he said under his breath. To celebrate
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Did she forget herself long enough to prize his, did she lay her head on his stomach, feel his chest and thighs, was he big?” (30) and within the same paragraph he thinks “The handbag caught his eye and he puzzled about it contents” (31). In this scene Birnam’s having drinks at a restaurant booth and notices a couple sitting by the bar. Birnam’s curious, if the woman provide the man with the necessary attention his body deserves and does the man sexually satisfies the woman. He likewise wonders if the man has a big “package”. In the same encounter, he speculates on the contents in the woman’s purse. Mutually the scenes can be indicators that Birnam’s a homosexual because although a woman present in the restaurant, he pays more attention to the physical attraction of the man, and also the details of the woman’s handbag and what she may keep inside of the bag.
Birnam describes a man “sat at the tiny piano, talking dirty songs. The men and girls strained to anticipate the double-meanings;..They were songs called “The 23rd Street Ferry” and “Peter and the Dyke”; camping, queen, faggot, meat were frequently played upon” (28-29). In this scene Birnam’s sitting in a bar listening to songs about fairies and dykes, he states that the men, who he describes as football players, and the girls are uncomfortable when they find out the songs double meaning. The words queen and faggot have history linked to homosexual so we can presume
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There are signs the bars Birnam’s frequently visiting are homosexual areas. Birnam’s contemplating on traveling to Jack’s, believing he’s drunk enough to drink and socialize with strangers. Later in the story he reads the newspaper clip “JACK’s—in Charles Street—WHERE GOOD FELLOWS GET TOGETHER” (85). The newspaper clip Birnam’s reading advertises bringing all men together to have a countless time. The clip’s intended to draw the eyes of men to attend the bar, and not women, thus through both scenes Jack’s a gay bar where Birnam visits when he want to socialize with other gay
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