The Hemingway Bibliography
 

Title

"It’s Only Interesting the First Time": or, Hemingway as Kierkegaard

Document Type

Article

Citation

Brogan, Jacqueline. “‘It’s Only Interesting the First Time’: or, Hemingway as Kierkegaard.” North Dakota Quarterly 64, no. 3 (1997): 5-26.

Annotation

Addresses the ethical problems of the creative writer, exploring the difference between meaningful, sustainable repetition and meaningless, deathward recollection as represented in The Garden of Eden and Sören Kierkegaard’s Repetition (1843). Asserts that writing, especially when based on the writer’s actual life, is a deathward act by casting relationships and events in the past tense, causing them to become recollections rather than allowing them to retain immediacy as repetitions. Argues that by detaching himself from Catherine to write, David keeps the relationship from healthy repetition and forces Catherine to desperately reinvent herself as “interesting” in order to maintain relevance and prolong her doomed relationship with her writer-husband. Asserts that the cycle of sexual destruction through pursuit of “the interesting” is a metaphor for the problems of “consciousness, time, memory, language, and writing.”

Published in

North Dakota Quarterly

Volume

64

Issue

3

Date

1997

Pages

5-26

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