Illustration of a bull and a bullfighter

The Sun Also Rises

by Ernest Hemingway

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Book I, Chapter 4 Summary

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Last Updated on April 14, 2023, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 212

While in a taxi, Jake kisses Brett but she quickly pushes him away. When he asks why, she confesses that his touch arouses her sexually, but she cannot find satisfaction due to his impotence caused by a war injury. Brett believes this is life's way of punishing her for the way she treated other men in the past.

They drive around before heading to Cafe Select. When they arrive, they meet up with their friends, but Frances and Robert are longer there. Jake complains of having a headache and decides to go back to his room. He displays a lack of respect for Brett and her affection towards him. While getting ready for bed, he reads some news about bullfighting. Even in bed, he still feels sad about his injury and his inability to participate in bullfighting. These thoughts make him cry.

Jake wakes up due to some noise. Brett is creating a disturbance downstairs to meet him. She informs him that the Count has brought her there and offered her money to run away with him, but she declined. Brett wants Jake to join her for a drink, but he declines, citing work in the morning and her excessive drinking. As she departs, Jake once again experiences a feeling of sadness.

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