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The Aimlessness of the Lost Generation The generation of people who lived through World War I are often referred to as the Lost Generation.
Jake, the novel’s narrator, is a journalist and World War I veteran.
During the war Jake suffered an injury that rendered him impotent.
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Though some are veterans of the war, now they live their lives in shallow pursuits living only for immediate pleasure.
When it is time to win Ashley, none of the main characters are up to the task.They compete in ways that are both psychological and physical.Yet none of the men are shown to be a strong man in any conventional sense.Bill, Jake, and Cohn travel together to Pamplona, where they are eventually joined by Brett and Mike.They stay at a local hotel owned by a man named Montoya.When Cohn confesses his romantic interest in Brett to Jake, Jake cautions him against pursuing a relationship with Brett, who is engaged to be married to Mike Campbell, a Scottish war veteran.Both Brett and Cohn eventually leave Paris: Brett sets off for San Sebastian (a small beach town in Spain) and Cohn for the countryside.Romero wins her over for a time with his valor and bravery, but this is short lived.Cohn stands up in a violent manner toward the other characters, but this is portrayed as brutish and ugly. They are prone to self-pity and drunken childishness.The novel portrays the old image of manliness as a lost ideal.Men are no longer heroic and they experience this impotence both figuratively in the fact that they cannot accomplish anything meaningful, and literally in the case of Jake’s sexual impotence.