The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is a short story in which F. Scott Fitzgerald, the author, presents wired phenomena of reverse aging. Benjamin Button, Fitzgerald's main character, was born an old man rather than a baby. As he gets older in age he looks younger. According to Fitzgerald age plays a crucial role in identity. Published in 1922, the cruel nature of aging in "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" is a reflection of one's Life, Consciousness, and Actuality.
Apart from "I" used in the Introduction; the rest of the story is not a first person point of view. The narrator is not just an observer, however. The narrator knows what Benjamin ponders of and what he enjoys to do. For example the narrator "There can be no doubt, though, that the rattle bored him, and that he found other and more soothing amusements when he was left alone". (Page 7) It seems that the narrator knows what's inside Benjamin.
When button starts to become the same age of his father he falls in love with hildegarde Moncrieff, the daughter of general Moncrieff. a lady got out, then an elderly gentleman, then another young lady, beautiful as sin. Benjamin started; an almost chemical change seemed to dissolve and recompose the very elements of his body. A rigour passed over him, blood rose into his cheeks, his forehead, and there was a steady thumping in his ears. It was first love." (Page5 paragraph 6) This shows that Mr. Button starts to get younger as he gets older in age and starts to gain emotions he had never felt in past years. "Hildegarde had chosen to marry for mellowness, and marry she did" (paragraph 3 page 12). "At that time Hildegarde was a woman of thirty-five, with a son, Roscoe, fourteen years old in the early days of their marriage Benjamin had worshipped her" (paragraph 7 page 12). Even though it is not stated directly the readers know that Benjamin starts to lose his love for his wife
Mr. Benjamin now looks forward to a long life. He started to love life like a young man. "In addition, Benjamin discovered that he was becoming more and more attracted by the gay side of life" (paragraph 4 page12). Benjamin starts to lose his love of his aging wife because she looks older than him and now starts to lose her enthusiasm for life. "As a bride it been she who had "dragged" Benjamin to dances and dinners--now conditions were reversed. She goes socially with him, but without enthusiasm." (Paragraph 7 page 12). The readers would sympathize with Benjamin's wife because she starts to become older than him and Benjamin starts to lose desire of love to his wife. What effect does this have on Benjamin wife? It kills her every time when she sees Benjamin gets younger and she gets older. This feeling kills Benjamin deep inside too, but he can't help it. "At the outbreak of the Spanish-American War in 1898 his home had for him so little charm that he decided to join the army. As Benjamin attracted to the happy side of life he decides to join army." (Paragraph1 page 12) This proves to the readers that Benjamin starts to feel his duty to his country like a young man who is ready to risk his life for his country.
As he returns from the war he stated to lose his identity slowly. His wife leaves him and he gets younger each year. When he enters the college he starts to lose his identity. Every year he becomes weaker and younger than his classmates. "He had grown so slight and frail that one day he was taken by some sophomores for a freshman, an incident which humiliated him terribly." (Paragraph 5 page 13). His is losing his identity like necklace beads that falls one by one each year as he grows younger. In his last years he dies slowly, he grows younger and younger each year until he became an infant. "He did not remember clearly whether the milk was warm or cool at his last feeding or how the days
passed--there was only his crib and Nana's familiar presence. And then he remembered nothing." (Page 18)