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Word Count: 1,140
Dark Against Light in A Clean Well-Lighted Place The main character in A Clean Well- Lighted Place written by Ernest Hemingway is the old man The old man who remains nameless throughout the short story comes to the caf for the light it provides him against the dark night He stays late into the night and sits In the shadow the leaves of the tree made against the electric light The old man is deaf and finds comfort in the difference he feels inside the quiet caf The old man struggles with old age and the feeling of nothingness which is representative of the darkness outside of the caf The well-lit caf represents order and cleanliness Outside in the dark a young soldier and a girl hurry along the streets Apparently the couple intend to go off alone They symbolize the excitement that can go on in the night between two people The old man is around eighty years old and does not have a wife He doesnt experience this type of relationship in the dark Rather he finds company in the clean well-lighted caf Although the only other two people in the caf at the late hour are the two waiters the old man finds it content The two waiters comment that although he is A good client they knew that if he became too drunk he would leave without paying The younger of the two waiters wants to go home He has a wife and claims he never gets into bed before three oclock He treats the deaf old man as if he were dumb He speaks to him with that omission of syntax stupid people employ when talking to drunken people or foreigners The young waiter knows that the old man tried to commit suicide last week but feels no remorse for him He is too preoccupied with closing
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