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Complications An analysis of Soldiers Home In Ernest Hemingways short story Soldiers Home we are presented with the story of a young man returning from war As the protagonist of Hemingways short story Krebs returns from WW I to the town and house in which he was raised as a boy Though we are not given any narration of Krebs experiences before or during the war Hemingway leaves us symbols of both in the first four paragraphs of the story One a picture of Krebs before the war with his fellow fraternity brothers at a Kansas Methodist college where notably all of them are wearing exactly the same height and style collar 136 obviously symbolizing conformity to Methodist family values and expectations The second from during the war a picture of Krebs with two German girls and another corporal 137 This picture is placed to let the mature audience ponder the likely possibilities it reflects An assumption can easily be made that the two girls are in all likelihood prostitutes an assumption that acquires greater validity and significance as the plot progresses Yet a third and very important symbol Hemingway leaves us as foundation to build his story upon is the solitary note of Krebs having been at Belleau Wood Soissons the Champagne St Mihiel and the Argonne 137 all of which were instrumental and equally horrific battles of WW I and yet this is all that Hemingway leaves us throughout the entire story this off-hand reference of a mere symbol to indicate the very significant assumption of the profound horrors Krebs must have been witness and party to Indeed Hemingway leaves us much to be assumed with this opening but these early symbols gradually gain significance and definition as the narration unfolds Hemingway shows us through the progressive narration of Krebs contemplations and interactions with his family and towns people that Krebs is no longer the boy he was before
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