Essay about A Clean Well-Lighted Place 1

1105 Words May 31st, 2012 5 Pages
A Clean Well-Lighted Place
In the short story “A Clean Well-lighted Place” by Ernest Hemingway the setting is very important. The story takes place in a Spanish speaking country in a café, but more so than the actual place the time is what makes the setting so crucial to the story. The story takes place at night Hemingway uses this in contrast to the well-lighted cafe with its artificial light. The contrast between dark and light is the main idea of the story and it is best expressed through the setting of the story. There are many different examples of this some are literal examples and some are more symbolic. The setting is symbolic as well as literal. It is a place that is not safe after dark a place where some one even a soldier
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The setting is not only the night but also the shadow that is created by the electric light of the café and the tree. The older waiter explains to the younger waiter why he like the café at night he says “‘you don’t understand. This is a clean and pleasant café. It is well lighted. The light is very good and also, now, there are shadows of the leaves’”(Hemingway 150). The older waiter puts emphasis on the shadow even though the light of the café is available. The old deaf man chooses to sit in shadow created by the tree when he could sit in the artificial light. He like the older waiter much prefer to stay in the dark or need to stay in the dark because they don’t like who they are or what they have become. The older waiter who is acting like the soul or the voice of the old deaf man goes home lays in his bed and finally, with the daylight, he will go to sleep. Like the artificial light he also avoids the daylight by going to sleep. The shadow in the story is just as important to the setting as the dark is or the electric light is. It represents the inescapable dark or nothingness that come with the night or with in people like the older waiter or the old deaf man. The older waiter is very confident or feels very strongly that a clean well-light café is very important for people like him and like the old deaf man. He says, “ A clean well-lighted café is a very different ”(Hemingway 151). He

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