What is the main theme in A Farewell to Arms?

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Numerous themes are developed in the novel, each contributing to Hemingway's examination of man's essential condition, one of profound spiritual loneliness. Through Frederic, and to a lesser degree through the other characters, Hemingway develops the idea that life is nothing more than random, often tragic, events, occurring without any divine plan. Various characters in the novel often speak of God, but He is nowhere to be found; "religion" becomes an expression of personal need and is defined, pursued, or practiced differently by the characters. Absent God, Frederic and Catherine embrace each other. "You are my religion," Catherine tells Frederic.

The spiritual loneliness that pervades the novel is seen in the characters' attempts to cope with life, to either find meaning in...

(The entire section contains 405 words.)

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