Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Cat in the Rain Essay

In his frictional story, â€Å"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 â€Å"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 â€Å"American girl† sees the cat through her window â€Å"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, â€Å"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 â€Å"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 â€Å"American girl† sees the cat through her window â€Å"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 the struggles she is willing to go through to better her marriage, even if it means getting wet in the process. The â€Å"American girl† believes this is a challenge she alone has to endure. Thus, when she announces that she is going to rescue the cat from the rain and her husband George offers to be the hero in the rescue attempt, even though it was a halfhearted offer, she quickly replies â€Å"No, I’ll get it. With the help of the maid she goes through the rain in search of the cat but when she gets to where she saw it last it has disappeared. The â€Å"American wife† becomes even more irritated with herself and her husband when she returns to the room empty handed. She desperately wanted the cat, â€Å"I wanted it so much,† but more so, she wanted change in her marriage and change in her appearance. She was tired of her boyish look and felt she needed to be more feminine, â€Å"I get so tired of looking like a boy. However, George was contented with how things were. He barley even shifted from his book when she began scrutinizing her appearance. The only comment of support he could offer was, â€Å"You look pretty darn nice,† but she required more for herself. The cat, even though symbolic, would have allowed her to express her feelings of affection and compassion, â€Å"I want to have a kitty to sit on my lap and purr when I stroke her. † George, being insensitive to her needs, did not even offer himself as an outlet for her emotions. Instead his remark to her was, â€Å"Oh, shut up and get something to read,† as she continued to utter her discomforts in her appearance and her femininity. Hemingway’s fictional story does have a surprising ending when the maid brings the â€Å"American wife† a â€Å"big tortoise-shell cat†. The â€Å"American wife† receives what she wanted, an outlet to express her affections and compassions, but in fact, it would not help her marriage. The cat was just a symbol of what she wanted from her husband, George. Unless she can convince him to be more open with her and more lovingly expressive with her, her marriage will still falter.

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