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A Farewell to Arms

In this novel A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway, Hemingway brings
about the evolution of Frederick Henry being converted into a code hero in
realistic ways.  Frederick Henry achieved the six code hero characteristics
by the end of the novel with the help of Catherine, a code hero herself.
All the characteristics seem to follow the path of a manly person who is
continuously striving to live his/her life to the fullest. Throughout this
novel, Frederick Henry’s behavior matures to the code hero in which
Hemingway desires to be.

In the start of the novel, Frederick Henry was into over- sensual
pleasures and could not control himself until he had spent much time with
Catherine and learned how to discipline himself. Henry “had drunk much
wine” and roamed from whore house to whore house near the beginning of the
novel.  He had no control over himself nor could hold his liquor or contain
himself from easy women during this time.  Henry finally disciplined
himself near the end of his stay at the Ospidale Maggoire.

The nada
concept had been a part of Henry’s life from the beginning.  Henry stood up
nights because the night is a representation of evil and death to him.  If
he is not asleep, he can avoid having to deal with it. Henry also is
accompanied by Catherine during nights at the Ospidale Maggoire.  To Henry
there “was almost no difference in the night except that is was an even
better time” with Catherine. Catherine, who is already a code hero, has
values which transcend onto Henry at the Hospital.  During the day, Henry
sleeps but Catherine has to work, so she stops coming to him on nights.
Henry is left to stay up, alone on nights.

Also, he does not ask Catherine
to come stay with him thus controlling his desires to make love to her.
From this point in the book, Henry disciplines himself.  During those
nights together, they made love and talked. When he first saw Catherine, he
was after sexual pleasures from her instead of the prostitutes in Gorizia.
He never realized that he was in love untill some time later.  Also, when
he is in the course of a battle with Manera, Gavuzi and Passini, he began
to eat food. Henry enjoys the food he eats, the love he makes and the wine
he drinks whenever he pleases to, as a code hero does.

Henry showed his loyalty to the individuals and small groups in his
life, and near the end of the novel he showed grace under pressure.  He is
loyal to people similar to the group of ambulance drivers he was driving
with on their retreat or people similar to the Count.  During his
desertion, he jumped into a river to avoid being shot and killed by the
Carabinieri.  The Carabinieri began to shoot every officer who showed up
late in the retreat.  The Italian army seemed to Henry to be unfit for him
and unorganized.  To avoid being killed he jumped into the Tagliamento
river.  Henry once began to believe he “would drown” and so “fought and
thrashed through the water” to save his life from the turbulent waters of
the Tagliamento.

He never showed the reader his feelings of bravery during
this feat.  In the final pages of book IV, Henry strove to cross the
Switzerland border and seek refuge from the Italian police.  When he
arrived there with Catherine, he was questioned by the border police and
told them he and his wife were looking for winter sport in Switzerland.  He
lied under questioning by the custom agents in order to save himself from
his army and did not show any frustrations or nervousness in the process.
With Catherine on his side, he proved to the reader that he was able to
show grace under difficult circumstances.

Henry never once talked about his beliefs or feelings throughout the
novel.  He does not talk about his hatred for the Carabinieri or his
feelings when he is cheerful or dismal.  He showed no signs of remorse for
deserting the Italian army or about the time when he shot and wounded the
Sergeant deserter.  In the end of the novel, Henry is faced with his love’s
death.  Henry told God “please, please, dear God, don’t let her die” the
moment before he entered the door where Catherine finally passed away due
to a hemorrhage.

Minutes later Henry is offered some company on the way
back to his home but he declines.  He goes off to his house by himself and
sorts things out with what death actually is.  He asked God to save his
greatest love after taking his child and does not receive an answer.  He
concludes that death is the end and when it gets you, there is no where to
go.  Henry never becomes a code hero until the end when he accepts death as
the end of existence.

Hemingways code hero, Frederick Henry, evolutionizes into a man whom
the reader could identify with and understand.  Henry unknowingly becomes a
code hero and a better person with the help of Catherine.  Henry becomes a
code hero in the end due to the help of many incidents.  On the last few
pages, the reader realizes he has become a code hero because he responded
to the serious situation on his hands calmly and orderly as Catherine did.

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