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Word Count: 1,565
In Ernest Hemingways A Farewell to Arms love and intoxication are closely tied to the even grander theme of escape Although escape is a greater driving force it exists in its connection to these other themes This complex relationship is found not only in Hemingways use of action and language but also in the minds and philosophies of most of the major characters Escape seems a natural preoccupation in a state of war Hemingway makes it the founding principle in such a situation and focuses on what is escaped to rather than the skeleton of a war being fought in the meantime Time and time again love and intoxication appear in this capacity Hemingway creates a strong foundation for this relationship in the action of the novel By presenting characters in the face of a universally threatening situation there is an understandably survivalist tone in the attitude of his characters towards the war Escape as a driving theme is a product of this subtle tone The war is avoided in conversation in thought and eventually in participation when Henry and Catherine desert their roles in its development Both of these characters have also left their homelands behind and Henry especially has several scenes of physical escape in the story It is particularly significant that he loses his leave in Milan because he is actually accused of consciously using alcoholism to escape the front 144 But beneath the larger more obvious events of escape in the novel love and intoxication become the everyday vessels of avoidance It is crucial that both exist simultaneously for Henry to survive this war Intoxication and love bear similar characteristics in the novel Henrys thought that the thing to do was to be calm and not get shot or captured 212 is representative of the motivation behind all the hedonism and escapism of these characters They are patiently escaping the war every day in subtle ways These methods of avoidance involve
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