Wu Ting
How would you interpret the verb ‘see’ in the context? How would you interpret the verb ‘see’ in the sentence ‘You do not see it’ in the third to last passage? Does it mean to come to know? Thanks. It’s from A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway (Chapter 11). the context: "What's the matter, father? You seem very tired." "I am tired but I have no right to be." "It's the heat." "No. This is only the spring. I feel very low." "You have the war disgust." "No. But I hate the war." "I don't enjoy it," I said. He shook his head and looked out of the window. "You do not mind it. You do not see it. You must forgive me. I know you are wounded." "That is an accident." "Still even wounded you do not see it. I can tell. I do not see it myself but I feel it a little."
May 17, 2016 1:23 PM
Answers · 5
The clue is in a part of the dialogue you have not quoted here. Lower down: "Some of them do (see). Some are very delicate and feel worse than any of us." Seeing is to be delicate and sensitive and feeling the implications of the situation - the death, the injuries (mental and physical), the love and the heartbreaks, human goodness and human evil, human strength and human frailty. Officers command men and send them to battle - some to their death. Part of the seeing and feeling is for human relationships. For Hemingway the war is horrible but it is also fertile soil for relationships. The war puts people together. They face pain and suffering together. They form relationships. "Seeing" includes seeing the consequences of "arms", and therefore the meaning of a desire to say farewell to arms.
May 17, 2016
Adding to the above answer: We often use the verb 'to see' as a way to say 'to understand'
May 17, 2016
'You are not aware of it' is my interpretation.
May 17, 2016
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