An Analysis of Ernest Hemingway's "Cat in the Rain"

Topics: Love, Marriage, Cat Pages: 3 (922 words) Published: April 19, 2012
An Analysis of Ernest Hemingway's "Cat in The Rain"
In his frictional story, “Cat in the Rain,” Ernest Hemingway sets the scene for his fiction in a hotel room in Italy on a rainy day. On the first reading of this short story it can be easily interpreted as a wife nagging her husband, who is lying in bed preoccupied reading a book. The young married American’s being in a foreign country on business or pleasure, (Hemingway does not say) one would expect that the expression of love would be more prominent even more so on a rainy day, however, this is not evident in Hemingway’s story. What Hemingway does illustrate is how an “American wife” feels starved for attention and love in her failing marriage.

He uses a cat as a symbol of compassion an affection to express the woman’s need for these emotions. Her frustration with her husband, whom does not readily allow her to physically share these feelings with him, also becomes very evident in the story. Hemingway uses the heavy rains as a tool to confine the American couple to their room, thereby, allowing him to display the interaction between the couple and further demonstrate their deteriorating marriage. In the story, the “American girl” sees the cat through her window “crouched under one of the dripping green tables,” and immediately feels the need to rescue it. Here is where Hemingway begins to use symbols to express the girl’s determination to save her faltering marriage. He shows the girl’s eagerness to go through the heavy rains to save the cat. The cat represents what she wants in her marriage, affection and compassion, and the rain signifies In his frictional story, “Cat in the Rain,” Ernest Hemingway sets the scene for his fiction in a hotel room in Italy on a rainy day. On the first reading of this short story it can be easily interpreted as a wife nagging her husband, who is lying in bed preoccupied reading a book. The young married American’s being in a foreign country on business or pleasure,...
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