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How does the setting complement the novel  in The Sun Also Rises?

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angeloswalt | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 11, 2010 at 1:17 PM via web

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How does the setting complement the novel  in The Sun Also Rises?

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droark | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted April 12, 2010 at 5:54 AM (Answer #1)

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The setting of this novel moves around from Paris and then to Spain and then back to Paris. This is particularly significant because the characters are all Americans who have moved to Europe to escape life in the United States. This move emphasizes the theme of disenfranchisement that is seen throughout the whole novel.

After WWI, many people were confused about the world in general. Never before in modern times had the world seen so much death and destruction, and people did not know not to react after such widespread changes. People turned away from the conscientious rationing and patriotic attitudes that the war had created and latched on to material pleasures. People with these ideas were called the Lost Generation.

Jake, Robert Cohen, Brett Ashley and the other characters are members of this Lost Generation. We can see these disillusioned and materialistic attitudes in their flamboyant parties and melodramatic reactions to the social world around them.

The time period of the setting leads us to the connection of our characters to this Lost Generation. Then, their abandonment of America shows us even further their distaste for all they have known and their desire to separate themselves from the life they have experienced so far.

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clemonskimberly | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 2, 2012 at 10:01 AM (Answer #2)

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The setting of The Sun Also Rises is in a multitude of places in the mid 1920's. It starts off in Paris, France, moves on to Pamplona, Spain, and finally ends in Madrid Spain. The setting of the novel not being in any one place compliments the novel by serving as a metaphor for the Lost Generation.
The Lost Generation is said to have been aimless and always in search of something, much like the behavior that the characters in the novel exhibit by traveling to different countries so often. The changing of the setting is a metaphorical connection to the Lost Generation.

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