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The Journal of English Language and Literature , Vol.49, No.4, 671 ~ 689, 2003
Articles : The Bell Also Tolls for Pablo: Hysteria and the Spanish Civil War
Seok Woo Kwon
One of the troubling facts other than the ambivalent representation of Republican politics and the Spanish Civil War in For Whom the Bell Tolls is the presence of Pablo, who has mostly been interpreted as a coward or a foil to Robert Jordan. Critics thus have rarely shown much interest in Pablo`s smart, intelligent, and thus complex and grave character (57-58, 94-95, 104, 215, 284). Why is Pablo, who was once an intelligent and brave Republican leader, more committed to liquor, his horses. and his safety than to the Republican cause? I believe that Pablo has changed after the massacre of Ayuntamiento (city hall), in that his involvement in this traumatic scene of violence brings on his hysterical impotence as well as his cowardice. Pablo wants his band to be saved from the holocaust of the War and is therefore reluctant to take part in blowing up the bridge, which, if executed, evidently will cause them to be hunted to death. As a realist, Pablo knows that it would not give "all" which Republicans had hoped. Because his agony and sorrow are not understood by Pilar and his band, he has to suppress his realization that war is futile if it is not consummated with a complete victory or defeat. while concealing his true intention of saving people, at least some of his band, under the guise of cowardice and hysteria. Pablo`s realization of the situation of and around the Iberian peninsula is correct. Pablo, for his name sake, "bewares" of foreign influences. Pablo wanted "all or none" ; otherwise, to his knowledge, the intervention of foreign forces would only aggravate the situation more complex entailing more casualties. As Pablo says to Jordan, foreigners "come[sl to destroy" (215). Seen thus, Pablo could be regarded as a Republican nationalist, one who determines his people`s destiny autonomously, or an anarchist like a member of POUM, although his narcissistic act of murdering the persons from other band remains troubling for such a view. Pablo finds himself "too lonely" (390) because nobody except Jordan can understand him and his not-so-cowardly cowardice. If Pablo is in a sense a scapegoat of the Spanish revolution, then the Spanish people to which Pablo belongs are victims of pre-wwII international politics. The importance of the discussion of Pablo`s hysteria is that it can shed light on the trauma of war and, further, demystify the (re)masculinizing and (re)generative myth of war`s violence.
Key Words
Ernest Hemingway, For Whom the Bell Tolls, male hysteria, nationalism, the Spanish Civil War,영미문학, 문화연구, 비교문학, 비평이론, English and American Literature, cultural studies, comparative literature, critical theory
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