A Hostile And Threatening World Essay Research

  • Просмотров 215
  • Скачиваний 12
  • Размер файла 16
    Кб

A Hostile And Threatening World Essay, Research Paper Ernest Hemmingway’s main characters, often referred to as heroes, “Live in a world that is like a hostile forest, full of unseen dangers, not to mention nightmares that haunt their sleep” according to Malcolm Cowley. “Death spies on them from behind every tree. Their only chance of safety lies in the faithful observance of customs that they invent for themselves.” “Soldier’s Home,” “Big Two-Hearted River,” and “The Snows of Kilimanjaro,” all depict this notion of following self-invented customs to protect themselves from threat. “Soldier’s Home” is a story about young man who has just returned home from World War I, “Big Two-Hearted River” is a story of a man camping alone in the

wilderness, and “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” is a story about a man dying from gangrene in Africa. Hemmingway’s heroes exist in the eye of a hurricane, the walls surrounding like the line between life and death. They are isolated within this, performing self-invented rituals to ward away the danger in which they are eternally shielding themselves from as it approaches closer with every passing year.The idea of a lurking danger is present even in Hemmingway’s early short stories when the hero is younger. In “Soldier’s Home,” the hero, Krebs, has disturbing lurking memories of World War One that plague his mind, preventing him from living like the other ex-soldiers in his town. Protecting himself from these memories is a set of rituals preformed daily, to guard him from

exposing these to others and to prevent him from constantly thinking of them.”He was sleeping in late in bed, getting up to walk down town to the library to get a book, eating lunch at his home, reading on the front porch until he became board and walking downtown [to play pool with his friends] In the evening he practiced on his clarinet, strolled down town and went to bed.”This daily routine allows Krebs to live a more normal life although the lurking memories prevent him from doing certain activities. He was unable to perform any activity that creates too many consequences for both himself and others including getting a girlfriend. Although he wants one, the process of both getting and keeping one creates too many consequences because “he did not want to get into the

intrigue or politics. He did not want to do any courting. He did not want to tell any more lies.” Whatever memory is causing him to make these lies, is the same that prevents him from saying and doing even the most fundamental things. When Krebs’ mother asked is he loved her, he replied “No I don’t love anybody.” Immediately afterwards he realizes his mistake but Krebs is not willing to tell her because “it wasn’t any good He couldn’t make her see it.” The same mysterious “it” that prevents him from telling the truth, is the same “it” that prevents him from praying, for whatever happened caused him to feel that he is no longer in God’s kingdom. Something extraordinarily disturbing must have occurred to cause this, like the realization of how

bloodthirstily he had killed, or how much pain and suffering he had single-handedly caused the families of the people he killed. Whatever “it” he is referring to is never reveled to the reader, and left for them to decide themselves. This “it” is the reason for the creation of his daily protective ritual. The threatening “it” which is causing Krebs to tell lies is ready to attack if revealed or remembered. The threatening hurricane eye is ready for the chance to constrict for the kill. As the Hemmingway hero ages, the fear begins to subside, disappearing at times but always able to resurface. The hero, now Nick, continues to follow rituals and rules to prevent the thoughts from recurring. This mindset and action is illustrated throughout “Big Two-Hearted River, ”