Tender Is the Night | Study Guide

F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Tender Is the Night | Book 3, Chapter 3 | Summary



A week later back at the clinic in Zurich, Dick Diver is approached by an extremely irate man, who is the father of a patient. Mr. Morris is incensed because his son, who is in the clinic for alcoholism and for being a kleptomaniac, has told him he has smelled alcohol on Dick's breath. So Mr. Morris has come to remove his son from the clinic.

Once the Morrises leave, Dick takes a hard look at his drinking. He calculates he is drinking a half-pint of alcohol each day, and makes a written plan to cut the amount in half. Franz arrives about a half hour later, and Dick tells him about the scene. But before revealing the real reason for it, Dick suggests Dr. Ladislau, another doctor at the clinic, mishandled things, and they should consider dismissing him.

Franz, however, grows quite serious at the news of the role alcohol has played. Within just a few minutes, he and Dick have agreed it is time for their partnership to end. Franz has been looking for just such an opportunity since Kaethe first led him to question Dick's seriousness as a doctor.


Although the split between Franz and Dick might seem abrupt, readers should have seen it coming. Dick has unraveled. Dick has a problem with alcohol. Dick is becoming as mentally unstable as his patients. Franz, on the other hand, is as strong as he has ever been. On the very day he and Dick make their decision, Franz is returning to the clinic after a brief hiatus and is excited and eager to get back to work.

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