Jake Barnes Character Analysis

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V. Significance Characters Jake Barnes, the protagonist and narrator of the narrative, is an American journalist living in Paris in the 1920s. Unlike his peers Bill, Robert, and Mike he is relatively reserved and is only seen sharing his true opinions with his closest of friends. Jake is put at ease when around Brett, as they often discuss their emotional problems with one and another. Though the two do hold some level of chemistry, Jake stills feels insecure about his masculinity, due to his war accident that rendered him impotent. This very same reason leads him in failing to establish a long-term romantic relationship and settle down with one single woman in the novel. To cope with his dissatisfaction, Jake takes out his anger on Robert. Knowing that Robert has feelings for Brett, he sabotages their relationship and gives him faulty advice, meanwhile pushing Brett to be with other guys. Like many of the other main characters of the novel, Hemingway uses Jake to…show more content…
We also learn of Jake’s pessimistic worldview, as he criticize Robert, his so-called friend for failure to find love and literary taste. He also delves into his insecurities, citing his Jewish heritage, inadequacy as a lover, and masculinity as Robert’s area of self-discontent. In contrast, Jake describes himself as a suave and smug writer, who is superior to Robert. Hemingway’s characterization of Robert via Jake’s perspective helps his audience comprehend not just the distinction, but similarities. Both characters hold a level of insecurity and self-doubt towards their literary and romantic lives. As much as Jake hates to admit it, he and Robert are very much alike in nature, the latter just serves as an exaggeration of their common traits. This sets the stage for novel’s cynical disposition and foreshadows the betrayal of friendship that repeatedly occurs in the
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