This self-importance, combined with his clear animosity towards old people, suggests that his relative youth has made him callous and lacking in perspective. Realizing the truth of what he has heard, the old waiter responds with the now-well-known parody of the Lord's Prayer: After the old man pays his bill and leaves, the old waiter chides the young waiter for his lack of patience and empathy for the old man.
A young waiter is angry; he wishes that the old man would leave so that he and an older waiter could close the cafe and go home.
Eventually, the old drunk waves the young waiter over to ask for more brandy, which irritates the young waiter even more. The old man has his dignity. Scott Fitzgerald and other ex-patriot American writers of the "lost generation. Hemingway himself suffered severe bouts of insomnia, feeling alone and deserted in the universe.
The man who takes the order thinks that the old waiter is just another crazy old man; he brings him coffee. The story emphasizes lateness — late not only in terms of the hour of the morning it's almost 3 A. Likewise, that no character has a name and that there is no characterization emphasize the sterility of this world.
When confronting a world that is meaningless, how is someone who has rejected all of the old values, someone who is now completely alone — how is that person supposed to face this barren world? Analysis What happens in this story? While the younger waiter argues that he's "lonely" or that old people have nothing to live for, the old waiter speculates that the suicide attempt was not from loneliness or destitution, but rather out of despair about the meaninglessness of life.
Active Themes When he finishes the prayer, the old waiter smiles and gets a drink at a nearby bar.
He drinks without spilling. The despairing nature of A Clean, Well-Lighted Place stems partly from this void in western consciousness. The young waiter wants the old man to go to one of the all-night cafes, but the old waiter objects because he believes in the importance of cleanliness and light.
The unhurried waiter disagrees, saying that an hour is the same to everyone. When confronting a world that is meaningless, how is someone who has rejected all of the old values, someone who is now completely alone — how is that person supposed to face this barren world?
Note, though, that neither of the old men is a passive victim. Afterward, he lived in Ontario and Chicago, where he met his first wife, Hadley Richardson.
Joseph Gabriel contended that the dialogue was metronomic and that the resulting confusion was viewed as an integral aspect of the story.
Critics have noted a series of contrasts in the story:From a general summary to chapter summaries to explanations of famous quotes, the SparkNotes A Clean, Well-Lighted Place Study Guide has everything you need to ace quizzes, tests, and essays. The older waiter sympathizes with these people – he recognizes that sometimes someone might need to take refuge in a "clean, well-lighted place," rather than a dark, dim bar or bodega.
After the younger waiter hurries off home to his wife, the older waiter takes his time, continuing their argument in his mind. A summary of Symbols in Ernest Hemingway's A Clean, Well-Lighted Place. Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of A Clean, Well-Lighted Place and what it means.
Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans. From a general summary to chapter summaries to explanations of famous quotes, the SparkNotes A Clean, Well-Lighted Place Study Guide has everything you need to ace quizzes, tests, and essays.
Find the quotes you need in Ernest Hemingway's A Clean, Well-Lighted Place, sortable by theme, character, or. From the creators of SparkNotes. “A Clean, Well Lighted Place” is Hemingway’s paean to a type of existential nihilism, an exploration of the meaning, or lack thereof, of existence.
It clearly expresses the philosophy that underlies the Hemingway canon, dwelling on themes of death, futility, meaninglessness, and depression.Download