Do you believe that the protagonists in “Big Two-Hearted River” and “Babylon Revisited” will find resolution to their internal conflicts?

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It is reasonable to predict that Nick Adams will eventually find resolution for what troubles him. His psychological problems are the result of the traumatizing effects of the war, and once he realizes that he is as much a victim of it as anyone else of his generation, living or...

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It is reasonable to predict that Nick Adams will eventually find resolution for what troubles him. His psychological problems are the result of the traumatizing effects of the war, and once he realizes that he is as much a victim of it as anyone else of his generation, living or dead, it seems likely that he will find a way to live with it. His instinct to retreat into nature to center himself is sensible, and he needs only to heal himself from the pain of what he could not control. It seems that he has no other responsibilities in his life other than to process the many emotions related to loss in the war. Given the story's final lines, he seems to understand that time will be required for him to resolve his current feelings.

The future for Charlie Wales, on the other hand, is more uncertain. He is filled with many personal regrets, and his attitudes and actions before the stock market crash will haunt him for years to come. His drunken and feckless behavior, now that he is sober and has taken stock of all he lost, causes him deep feelings of guilt. He also struggles to rebuild his reputation, and the tragedy is that he has very little control over what people have come to think about him. It is uncertain that Marion will ever relent and forgive him or that he will regain custody of Honoria. As long as he is in Paris, where she is, there will always be the risk of his past coming back to haunt him, as is demonstrated by the appearance of Lorraine and Duncan.

Unlike Nick Adams, Charlie Wales has himself to blame for his current state of affairs. With regard to both men's abilities to resolve their inner conflicts, Nick is more likely to heal than Charlie.

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