Arms and the Man

Arms and the man

what does chocolate symbolize in arms and the man as it has with an officer?


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Chocolate serves as an enduring and complex symbol throughout Arms and the Man. When first introduced it serves as a symbol of Captain Bluntschli’s pragmatism and disdain for romanticism. Instead of carrying his cartridges, which are later revealed to be useless, the Swiss mercenary carries chocolate. During this time period, soldiers often carried chocolate with low milk content as rations; such chocolate rarely spoiled, even in humid conditions, and could provide a significant amount of calories, even in small portions (Satran 26). Some readers may, like Raina, incorrectly assume Bluntschli was carrying a luxurious treat, but it was not an indulgence, but a practical ration for the field.