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Ernest Hemingway on Sex and Relationships - Essay Example

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Ernest Hemingway on Sex and Relationships

Jake Barnes is an American veteran of WWI who works as a journalist in Paris. Though it seems that he is the most stable among his friends, he struggles through the pain of loving Lady Brett and the fact that the war has rendered him not only impotent but also changed.
On the other hand, we have Lady Brett Ashley. An elite British woman who was earlier separated with his husband. She met Jake Barnes in a hospital during the war and developed strong feelings for him. Although she has these feelings, she adamantly refuses a committed relationship because Jake Barnes apparently can't satisfy her physical needs. Lady Brett Ashley is one of those highly independent women of her generation who loves conversations and drinking with leisure.
Most of the characters in the story have aimless and seemingly idle lives due to the war. Through the eyes of Jack Barnes as the narrator of the story, we are able to see how he sees his peers in the aftermath of the war. In all his hidden worries and trouble, he sees Lady Brett Ashley as his salvation. A cure to his war pains.
Now, Jack Barnes and Lady Brett Ashley are seemingly in love with each other. But due to Jack Barnes inability to make love, Lady Brett Ashley refuses a relationship with him. Sex is apparently important to a 'modern' woman like Lady Brett. To her, the finality of one's affection is expressed through sex. True, an impotent partner would render one to be sexually frustrated and unsatisfied no matter if she admits it or not. Lady Brett Ashley is definitely one of those who are honest and knowing enough of their needs.
Now does sex really matter I believe for some it does and for some it doesn't. A friend once said she wouldn't mind if her loved one got impotent. Moreover, she'd love him even though he couldn't make her satisfied in that special way. There could be other ways to find pleasure she says. When she said that, there was no doubt in my mind that a time would come when she would feel the sexual frustrations that was bound to her. After all, she is only human and due to those feelings.
I myself would definitely say that sex definitely matter in an intimate relationship. It's the ultimate ingredient for the perfect recipe; loving partner, good communication and a wonderful sex life. Who wouldn't want that It's a fact that everybody I think would hope for although I'm sure not everybody would openly admit.
Is love and affection really enough to cover the void of having no sex At some instances in the story I believe Lady Brett Ashley also believe it is so. In chapter four of the story, she contradicts her beliefs in instances when she lets Jake Barnes kiss or comfort her. Giving in does mean a yes right Also, when she refuses Count Mippipopolous' offer of a great amount of money to go with him on a trip, she then informs of this to Jake. Lady Brett Ashley tells Jake Barnes that she wants him to join them in their trip. That was a big contradiction on her part. She obviously wanted to be with Jake, even if it is just his companionship and the fact that she downright refused to have a committed relationship with him.
Impotence not only affects the sexual life of the inflicted but also his mindset. In chapter four, Jake releases his frustrations and cries himself to sleep. He regrets having even met Lady Brett Ashley and laments that his troubles would never have started he hadn't known her. Impotence has devoid him of his ...Show more


Although sex may be one of the crucial aspects in any intimate relationship, many are reluctant to admit it. Perhaps it could be that sex is too much of an intimate affair between couples and includes strong emotions that people tend to be passive when the issue comes up.
Author : bechtelarviola
Ernest Hemingway on Sex and Relationships essay example
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