A Moveable Feast Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 44 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A Moveable Feast.
This section contains 494 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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A Moveable Feast Summary & Study Guide Description

A Moveable Feast Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion and a Free Quiz on A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway.

A Moveable Feast is a memoir by Ernest Hemingway describing the years he spent in Paris following World War I with his wife, Hadley, and young son, Bumby. This is a time when many artist and authors are living in Paris, and Hemingway writes about his encounters and friendships with Ezra Pound, Ford Madox Ford, Gertrude Stein and F. Scott Fitzgerald. A large portion of the book is taken to describe Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda in particular. Hemingway closes the period of time he writes about at the time he begins an affair with a young woman, who he associates with the wave of "rich" people who discover Paris changing it for him forever.

Hemingway opens the book with a discussion of the bad weather, and the cafes of Paris where people go to escape the cold, and where he goes to write. He is working as a journalist for a Canadian newspaper and is trying to begin a career as a "straight" writer of short stories. Hemingway describes losing himself in his writing as he works at the cafe tables, distracted only occasionally by a pretty girl or a boorish critic.

Many of the books short chapters are character sketches of the artists and authors Hemingway met and came to know in Paris. He relates his relationship with the sometimes difficult Gertrude Stein and his respect for Ezra Pound. He describes the kindness of Sylvia Beach, the proprietor of Shakespeare and Company, a bookstore where many of the expatriate community congregate, including James Joyce.

Hemingway also gives vivid descriptions of the city itself and the people who inhabit it such as the waiters he befriends and the fishermen along the Seine River. Interspersed throughout the book are references to his own career as a writer as he struggles to make enough money to care for himself and his family by writing short stories. He also scatters references to his own writing technique through the book. Hemingway describes himself as a quiet but quick-tempered and impatient youth, and his recollections are told from the point of view of this confident young man.

The final quarter of the book is devoted to Hemingway's first encounters with F. Scott Fitzgerald, who would become a loyal friend despite the maddening beginning to their relationship. Fitzgerald is depicted as a gifted but insecure writer, with an alcohol problem made worse by his mentally ill wife, Zelda. Hemingway is extremely critical of Zelda, who he believes wants only to destroy Fitzgerald.

Hemingway ends the book with a pleasant reminiscence of spending winters with his wife and sun in the Austrian mountains hiking and skiing and working on his writing. This pleasant time in his life ends however when "the rich" discover him as a promising young writer and invade his life. It is at this time that he begins to have an affair with one of these "rich" young women, and where he chooses to end the time period he is describing.

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This section contains 494 words
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