The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway Symbolism of the bullfight.

Essay by sorcererbmHigh School, 12th gradeA, April 2004

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Arena del Toros

When an event that incorporates life, death and serious emotions occurs, it is bound to

parallel several other facets of life. One of the few events in life that can thoroughly present life

and death in a graphic and public manner is the bullfight. Ernest Hemingway seems rather

attached to the bullfight as it becomes a central symbol in "The Sun Also Rises". Hemingway's

rugged individualism is shown throughout the novel and can be seen represented in the bullfight.

The economy of motion in a good bullfight is a parallel to monetary economy. While betrayal is

not directly related to a bullfight, the fight allows for the characters in "The Sun Also Rises" to

betray love. A bullfight may be the best example to prove the futility of life. In "The Sun Also

Rises", Hemingway relies heavily on the bullfight to represent and enhance major aspects of life.

The individualistic life that most characters lead in Hemingway's novels is represented in

many ways. In "The Sun Also Rises" Individualism is represented by sports; boxing, tennis,

fishing, and more importantly, by the bullfight. The element of the bullfight serves to show the

ultimate of individual triumphs. There is only one man in a bullfight, it is a battle between that

one man and the bull. While tennis and boxing could stand alone as metaphors for

independence, the bullfight acts as a foil to enhance the concept of solitude.

Throughout the book allusions to economy abound. The number of words used in

telegrams is a prominent example of ones efficiency. Jake is an economical person and thus he is

a great admirer of the bullfight. When Jake speaks of being economical with his money "he is


talking more abstractly about other kinds of economy - the...