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Podcast #284: This Will Make a Man of You | The Art of Manliness

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Last summer, I had Lesley Blume on the show to talk about her book Everybody Behaves Badly, which gives the story behind the story of Hemingway’s first big novel, The Sun Also Rises. On today’s show, I talk to an author of another book about this landmark novel, who, instead of providing the historical context of The Sun Also Rises, explores the ideal of manliness Hemingway was trying to get at in the book. His name is Frank Miniter, he’s a journalist and the author of previous books like The Ultimate Man’s Survival Guide. His latest is called This Will Make a Man of You: One Man’s Search to Find What Makes Men.

Frank and I discuss Hemingway’s project of creating a new myth of manliness that combined traditional notions of masculinity with modern sensibilities, how Frank Sinatra killed the rugged gentleman and made “cool” a defining feature of modern manliness, and what the running of the bulls can teach us about rites of passage into manhood. We end our conversation talking about Hemingway’s attraction to and repulsion from bullfighting, and why the matador was Hemingway’s ideal symbol of manliness.

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