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The majority of people assume Brett Ashley in The Sun Also Rises is nothing more than a nymphomaniacal slut Hemingways symbolic portrayal of women may be best revealed through an investigation of the much-maligned heroine of The Sun Also Rises Lady Brett Ashley Popular opinion dismisses her as a shallow selfish vain alcoholic bitch Bitch though admittedly crude in casual conversation and a term I despise is the technical term the critics have assigned to the Hemingway heroines they dont particularly like One particular critic summarizes the range of popular opinions Like other Hemingway heroines Brett Ashley has been denounced as a weak character The more serious and frequent critical charges against her however are that she lacks the characteristics of a woman and worse that she is a bitchthe sentimentally regarded dare-devil and she never becomes real Whitlow 148 Bretts seemingly insatiable sexual appetite and apparent lack of moral inhibitions do not aid the reader in reaching the conclusion that she is a romantic symbol However there are a few twists of plot in The Sun Also Rises that when taken into account explain not only Bretts behavior but also the narrators reaction First the narrator Jake Barnes is impotent Not even Viagra can help him he had an unfortunate run-in with a shell fragment in the war However in this encounter he was not emasculated per se his sexual appetite is tragically spared but he is left without a physical means to act on it Second he is in love with Brett and she with him On a romantic drive through Paris the couple speaks of their unrequited passion Dont you love me Jake Love you I simply turn to jelly when you touch me Brett Isnt there anything we can do about it Jake She looked at Jake as though there were nothing on earth she would not look at like that and really she was afraid of so many things Brett
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