What happens in the book "The Sun Also Rises", and what type of conflicts are described?

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renelane eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Sun Also Rises is a tale of a group of Americans in post-world war one who represent the "Lost Generation".  They leave America for Europe because they have grown dissatisfied and disillusioned with the concept of the "American Dream".

The main conflict is that each feels lost, they have lost their own conception of who they are, and are trying to figure it out.

They spend a lot of time drinking, sleeping around, and travelling, and none of this really helps them discover themselves again. Jake and Brett wish that they could be together, but a war injury leaves Jake unable to pursue a romantic relationship. He struggles with his masculine identity, as well as pain at his inability to have Brett.

Brett finds solace in the arms of many men. She is not a typical loose woman, she knows that she is considered this, but also has her own reasons for living her life in this way. She seems to move from relationship to relationship as a reaction to not being with Jake.

Robert struggles with his sense of self,  as well. He tries to fit in, and at the same time prove his superiority. He also desires to be with Brett, and is the outcast among the group.


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The Sun Also Rises

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