Madrid, A World Full Of Illusions (“The Capital

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Madrid, A World Full of Illusions ("The Capital of the World") At the very close of "The Capital of the World," Hemingway states that his character, Paco has died, "as the Spanish phrase has it, full of illusions." This phrase, one might contend, could serve as a summary of the tumultuous forces that guided Paco's life to its very sudden and tragic end.

Paco is a character who comes out of the poverty and destitution of a small village to work with his sisters in a restaurant in Madrid. Immediately, we find out that Paco has a great deal of love, "he loved his sisters, who seemed beautiful and sophisticated; he loved Madrid, which was still an unbelievable place, and he loved his work, which, done under bright lights, with clean linen, the wearing of evening clothes, and abundant food in the kitchen, seemed romantically beautiful."

This idea of love and romanticism is prevalent throughout the story, as we see Paco, more and more as a character who becomes taken over by the images of his surroundings.

Through the progression of the story, we find out that Paco wants to be "a good catholic, a revolutionary, and have a steady job, while at the same time, being a bullfighter." These aspirations might seem a little far-fetched, but normal for a boy his age, but Hemingway crafts the story in such a fashion, in which we, as readers, are made to believe that Paco was so intoxicated by the images of romance around him that he had no choice in any of his actions, and this romanticism led inevitably to his demise. And it is ironically through the restaurant, the place where he went to avoid poverty and destitution, where he meets his end.