Sunday, May 4, 2014

Ernest Hemingway: Men Without Women (1927)

Yeah, my Hemingway experiment may have reached an end.  I read his second short-story collection, Men Without Women, and I'm glad I did because I just learned that Murakami Haruki borrowed the title for his latest collection.  So, now I'll get the reference, which is half of why I read literature anyway. 

But honestly that's all I got out of this book.  It just felt like more of the same.  Macho bullshit.  Crisis of masculinity.  I'm not sure he's saying anything new with it.  And I suspect he was worried about that, too, because more of these stories are extroverted, flirting with genres - the bullfighting story, but also the boxing story and the gangster story.  But at least with the latter, I found myself almost crying with frustration, because Hemingway's contemporary Dashiell Hammett - who I was reading immediately after this - does it so much better. 

So I should quit, right?  Cut my losses, life's too short, right?  I may not be able to, though.  In the interest of getting the reference, I may end up feeling like I have to read two or three more.  Fair warning.

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