Essay on Earnest Hemingway

This essay has a total of 3060 words and 13 pages.

Earnest Hemingway

Earnest Hemingway
As one of the 20th century's most important and influential writers. His writings drew
heavily on his own experiences for his writing. His writing reflected his trouble with
relating to women and his tendency to treat them as objects, as he had four marriages and
countless affairs, highlighting his theme of alienation and disconnection. Now here is why
he is what he is by writing about what he was.

Ernest Miller Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899, in Oak Park, Illinois, to Dr. Clarence
Hemingway and Grace Hall Hemingway. Oak Park was a mainly Protestant, upper middle-class
suburb of Chicago that Hemingway would later refer to as a "town of wide lawns and narrow
minds" (Gerogiannis 188). The second among six children, Ernest spent the first two years
of his life dressed as a girl by his mother. She called him "Ernestine" and fantasized
that he was the twin of his older sister, as she dressed them both in matching dresses and
gave them similar hairstyles (Rozkis 233) As he grew older, however, his father stepped in
and insisted that Ernest be "raised like a man," teaching Ernest how to behave and
introducing him at a young age to hunting, fishing, and boxing, all activities in which he
would stay interested for the rest of his life (Gerogiannis) It is perhaps this early
start at questioning his manliness and his father's attempts to drive any femininity out
of him that instilled his characteristic obsession with proving his masculinity throughout
his life.

Schlusemeyer 2
Hemingway received his schooling in the Oak Park public school system. In high school he
was mediocre at sports, joining the football, swimming, basketball, and water polo teams
and serving as the track team manager (Nelson 5). He began his journalistic career writing
for the school paper, the Trapeze, where he wrote his first articles and often humorous
pieces in the style of Ring Lardner, a popular satirist of the time. After graduating in
the spring of 1917, against the wishes of his parents, he forwent college and took a job
as a cub reporter for the Kansas City Star. It is here that the seeds of his unmistakable
staccato writing style were planted as he followed the rules of the Star's stylebook
exactly. "Use short sentences," it said. "Use short first paragraphs. Use vigorous
English, not forgetting to strive for smoothness. Be positive, not negative" (Gerogiannis
201)

The allure of the war in Europe, however, was too strong for a young man looking to prove
his manliness. After only six months on staff at the Star, Hemingway resigned and
attempted to enlist in the army, only to be rejected because of poor vision. Determined to
get involved in the war, he joined the Red Cross and was shipped off to Italy as an
ambulance driver. His first day on the job, a munitions factory exploded and he had to
carry the bodies and body parts of the women who worked in the factory to a makeshift
morgue. Only a few weeks later, as he was distributing chocolate and cigarettes to Italian
soldiers in the trenches near the front lines, Hemingway was seriously wounded by
fragments from an Austrian mortar shell which had landed only a few feet away. Hemingway
claimed, despite over 200 pieces of shrapnel being lodged in his legs and being shot in
the legs several times, he managed to carry a wounded soldier back to the

Schlusemeyer 3
first aid station. For this feat, he was awarded the Silver Medal for Valor by the Italian
government. Because of his tendency to exaggerate his heroism in telling of his own feats,
however, some believe that Hemingway may have changed some details about the event in
retelling it or fabricated it altogether (Rozkis 235).

After rehabilitating in Milan for a short time, Hemingway returned home and was celebrated
as a war hero. He was nineteen years old and only a year out of high school, but his short
experience in the war had matured him beyond his years. Living with his parents, who never
quite appreciated what their son had been through, was difficult. His short story
"Soldier's Home" reflects his feelings of frustration and shame upon returning home to a
world that still has a romantic notion of war and fails to understand its psychological
impact.

Shortly after meeting Hadley Richardson in early 1920 and marrying her in 1921, Hemingway
was offered a job as European correspondent for the Toronto Star Weekly. Eager to return
to Europe, he accepted and he and his new bride moved to Paris, where many budding writers
were flocking and the living expenses were low, thanks to the skyrocketing value of the
American dollar following the war. He soon began writing fiction earnestly and immersed
himself in the local literary scene, becoming well acquainted with other writers such as
Gertrude Stein, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and James Joyce. With Fitzgerald, he formed a close
literary friendship, even to the point that Fitzgerald convinced him to remove the first
chapter of The Sun Also Rises, which explains the backgrounds of all the characters
(Gerogiannis 190). After months of intense writing in Paris, Hemingway had completed the
manuscripts of several short stories,

Schlusemeyer 4
poems, and novels, including A Farewell to Arms and The Sun Also Rises, but, just before
Christmas, Hadley put all of these manuscripts in a valise to bring them to him at a
Lausanne Peace Conference, and they were stolen and never recovered. Luckily, two
manuscripts that happened to be in other hands at the time were able to be published:
Three Stories and Ten Poems, and the story "My Old Man," which was selected to appear in
The Best Short Stories of 1923.

The Hemingways returned to the United States briefly in 1923 so their first child, John
Hadley Nicanor "Bumby" Hemingway, could be born on American soil, but quickly returned so
Ernest could resume concentrating on his writing and reconstruct the works he had lost. In
December of 1924 the collection of short stories in our times (characterized by its
lowercase title) was published in Europe and almost a year later, the American version, In
Our Times, which was expanded greatly from its European counterpart, was published by Boni
and Liveright. He soon wrote a parody of his once friend Sherwood Anderson entitled The
Torrents of Spring. Raymond S. Nelson writes that he wrote this "partly to vent his anger
at what he felt was Anderson's compromising style and partly to break his contract with
Boni and Liveright, Anderson's publisher" (7). The publishing house refused to publish it
and Hemingway was free to have Charles Scribner publish not only Torrents, but also his
first major novel, the second version of The Sun Also Rises.

In early 1925, the Hemingways met Pauline Pfeiffer, a fashion editor for Vogue magazine.
She was intrigued greatly by Ernest and his writing and soon began spending a great deal
of time with the family. By mid 1927, it became apparent, however, that the

Schlusemeyer 5
feelings between Pauline and Ernest were more than friendly and, after several months of
fighting, Hadley set up a separate residence in Paris. Hadley made an agreement that if
Ernest and Pauline could stay apart for one hundred days and were still in love after, she
would grant a divorce so the two could be together. Pauline immediately left for the
States. It is during these hundred days that Hemingway wrote most of the short story
collection Men without Women. Having fulfilled the terms of the agreement, Pauline
returned to Paris at which time Ernest divorced Hadley and promptly married Pauline
(Nelson 6).

In 1928, seeking to start a new life, the Hemingway and his new bride moved to Key West,
Florida, where he worked casually on A Farewell to Arms and spent most of his days
fishing. Hemingway's second son, Patrick, and third son, Gregory Hancock, were born. The
Hemingways took an extended visit to Ernest's parents' home and his parents scolded him
for the subject matter of his writing. They said they "hoped that he would write about the
joyous, and optimistic, and spiritual things in life" (Nelson 8). Shortly after the visit,
suffering from countless physical ailments and a dismal financial situation after
speculative real estate purchases in Florida never panned out, Hemingway's father shot
himself in the head. Ernest claimed that his father was "the only one he ever really cared
about," and his attitude toward his mother soured even further after his father's suicide,
calling her "an All-American bitch" (Nelson 8).

After A Farewell to Arms Hemingway, published his 1932 Spanish bullfighting dissertation,
Death in the Afternoon, an encyclopedic book on bullfighting with observations on Spanish
culture, writers, food, people, politics, and history. Hemingway

Schlusemeyer 6
wrote about the purpose of the book, "It is intended as an introduction to the modern
Spanish bullfight and attempts to explain that spectacle both emotionally and practically.
It was written because there was no book which did this in Spanish or in English." Many
critics slammed Hemingway's change from writer to actual character in one of his own
works, taking issue with his blustery tone, particularly when criticizing writers. Laurie
E. Rozkis writes that this "was the genesis of the public "Papa" image that would grow
over the remaining 30 years of his life, at times almost obscuring the serious artist
Continues for 7 more pages >>




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    Hemingway The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber Ernest Hemingway was one of a group of artists in the inter-war period of the early twentieth century who was left mentally (and for Hemingway also physically) scarred by the total devastation he witnessed during and after the Great War. Gertrude Stein labeled Hemingway and his peers "a Lost Generation", a famous phrase that only partially describes the detachment, confusion, instability, and distrust that these twenty- and thirty-somethings fel
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    Hemingway1 Post a comment on this essay Read other users\' comments Print this essay New Essays | Popular Essays | Submit an Essay Index: Literature: Hemingway Earnest Hemingway\'s Works Ernest Miller Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899, in Oak Park, Illinois. His father was the owner of a prosperous real estate business. His father, Dr. Hemingway, imparted to Ernest the importance of appearances, especially in public. Dr. Hemingway invented surgical forceps for which he would not accept money.
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    hemingway Ernest Hemingway: His life and his stories Ernest Hemingway was man of many words. He wrote many novels and short stories. Ernest Hemingway also led a hard life. He often incorporated his life into his stories. His life and work was a direct result of his life. Some of his stories show a direct relationship between his life and his work. Looking at three of Hemingway\'s short stories, " Soldier\'s Home," "A Cat in the Rain" and " A Clean Well-Lighted Place, in terms of their relationsh