Everday Situations Essay

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Everyday Situations Nobel Prize winner Earnest Hemingway wrote the short story Cat in the Rain. The story is set in Italy where a couple is staying the night in a hotel room there. On the surface the story seems quite simple but Hemingway uses symbolism to take the story and the characters deeper. The most obvious use of symbolism in this story is shown through the character of the cat. The cat symbolizes the things in life that the wife wants but something is keeping from them. The idea of the cat being caught in the rain represents her dreams and wants being put on hold. When she goes out into the rain the cat has disappeared within a matter of minutes. This symbolizes her dreams constantly being pushed away by her husband. At the end of the story the maid brings a cat to the room; however, we do not know if it is the same cat that she saw in the rain. So are dreams finally coming true or is it just another illusion? Although the hotel-keeper does not have a significant role in the story, he represents some of the things that the wife wants. When the wife is leaving the hotel to go outside and get the cat the hotel-keeper says, “Si, si signora, brutto tempo. It is very bad weather.” He then sends the maid outside with an umbrella to protect the wife from getting wet. The hotel-keeper represents the way that she wisher her husband could be. She says she “…liked his dignity. She liked the way he wanted to server her.” It is clear to the reader that her husband did not want to serve her because when he offers to go outside and get the cat he makes no real effort to get up and stop reading his book, he was doing just to ask but with no real intention of doing it for his wife. Through the hotel-keeper Hemingway shows the reader what the wife is lacking from her husband and how the grass is always greener on the other side. The wife’s husband appears as the
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