Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Catherine Barkly Man s Stepping Stone Of Achievement...

Catherine Barkly: man s stepping stone to achievement and fulfillment The Bechdel test, while usually applied to films, asks whether a work of fiction features at least two named, women characters who talk to each other about something other than a man. Works that pass the test are considered to have a rudimentary level of female agency and independence. Ernest Hemingway s hyper masculine novel, A Farewell to Arms, does not pass the Bechdel test. The novel, published in 1929, is set in Italy during World War I and centers around Lieutenant Frederic Henry, an American ambulance driver in the Italian army. Catherine Barkley is an English nurse and serves as Henry s love interest. Unlike Henry, she is a static character who does not†¦show more content†¦How many have you—how do you say it?—stayed with? None. You re lying to me. Yes. It s all right. Keep right on lying to me. That s what I want you to do. Were they pretty? (Hemingway 104-105) Initially, the relationship was a game of love with the sole purpose of distracting them from unpleasant circumstances. This passage demonstrates this game but also one of the illusions their entire relationship is built upon. Catherine and Henry are both acknowledging the lie. This dialogue establishes the importance of illusion in Catherine and Henry s relationship. By accepting the illusion, Catherine furthers her position as and idealization rather than a realistic character. Catherine s hair is a significant symbol in the novel. Henry s description of her hair in chapter XVII has become a well-known passage. He says, I would watch her while she kept very still and then take out the last two pins and it would all come down and she would drop her head and we would both be inside of it, and it was the feeling of inside a tent or behind a falls. (Hemingway 114). This description stands as a symbol of the couple s isolation from the world. Henry allows himself to believe that they ar e protected from the outside world by something as delicate as hair. In this description we are reminded of Catherine s alluring beauty as well as her innate ability to be exactly what Henry needs at any given point. By submitting to

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