Repetition in Hemingway’s short story Cat in the Rain
Ernest Hemingway was one of the greatest American novelists and short-story writers of the 20th century. He cleaned up American prose and made it just simplier and down to earth. At that time this was a particular type of modernism in America. Typical for Hemingway’s prose writing was also the girlish aspect, it was more dark, the meaningless world, that nothing makes sense. In this context Hemingway had the opinion that people think in simple terms and therefore that they think in repetitions. Hemingway also thought in repetitions. To make this clearer, I’m going to show you Hemingway’s use of repetitions in one of his famous works, Cat in the Rain . But first the short story will be summarized in a briefly way. Despite the fact that the short story Cat in the Rain covers only a few minutes, we can get a sufficient insight into the married life of an American couple as the following summary will show. The short story Cat in the Rain is about an American couple that spends their holidays in a hotel in Italy. It is a rainy day and for that reason the two people called “the Americans” have to stay in their room. While the woman is looking out of the window, she sees a cat in the rain which she definitely wants to protect. When she goes out of the hotel, she passes the old Italian hotel-owner who seems to do everything to please her. As the American woman reaches the yard to fetch the kitty, it already has disappeared. After returning to the hotel room, she starts talking to her husband George, who is lying in bed and reading all the time, about how much she wants to have a cat and a lot more things like longer hair, her own silver to eat with or candles, but her husband only seems to be annoyed and not interested at all by his wife’s moment of distress so that he wants an end to this conversation. At the end of the short story there is a knock on the door and the maid stands there holding a big...
Bibliography: Scribner Paperback Fiction. The Complete Short Stories of Earnest Hemingway: The Finca Vigia Edition. Simon and Schuster Inc., 1987, New York. [127-132]
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