The Sun Also Rises

How Jake’s specific war injury symbolizes the plight of the lost generation as a whole.

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In the years following World War I -- the time in which the book is set -- many Americans were drawn to Paris as a modern city with a favorable exchange rate. In particular, writers including Hemingway flocked to Paris because they found greater artistic freedom there. They also found a large circle of like-minded people who carried wounds, visible and invisible, from the brutal war that had recently ended.

The term is often thought to refer to the personal habits of people like some of those depicted in the novel, including men with injuries, taking advantage of opportunities to eat and drink too much to compensate for the losses they have suffered.