Presentation on theme: "Ernest Hemingway A mans man!. Iceberg Principle (the theory of omission) focusing on surface elements without explicitly discussing the underlying themes."— Presentation transcript:
Iceberg Principle (the theory of omission) focusing on surface elements without explicitly discussing the underlying themes. the true meaning of a piece of writing should not be evident from the surface story, rather, the crux of the story lies below the surface and should be allowed to shine through. Reader fills in the omissions with their feelings, and therein is the story Contrast to realism/naturalism as a writing style –Characterization, dialect, description
Hemingway writes …you could omit anything... and the omitted part would strengthen the story." "A few things I have found to be true. If you leave out important things or events that you know about, the story is strengthened. If you leave or skip something because you do not know it, the story will be worthless. The test of any story is how very good the stuff that you, not your editors, omit."
Hemingway's biographer Carlos Baker believed that as a writer of short stories Hemingway learned "how to get the most from the least, how to prune language and avoid waste motion, how to multiply intensities, and how to tell nothing but the truth in a way that allowed for telling more than the truth. the writing style of the iceberg theory the hard facts float above water, while the supporting structure, complete with symbolism, operates out-of-sight.
Deceptively simple, rhythmic prose using "declarative sentences and direct representations of the visible world" with simple and plain language Depicts moments of action and rapid, terse dialogue Characters quietly stand up to the pain of life He makes use of physical action to provide an interpretation of the nature of man's existence. –Leads into Existentialism
Existentialism Philosophy of giving true meaning to life and living it passionately and sincerely (Kierkegaard) EXISTENCE PRECEDES ESSENCE See article
Six Word Stories For sale: baby shoes, never worn. ~Hemingway NPR link Failed SAT. Lost scholarship. Invented rocket. ~William Shatner You Try
2 major contributions to American literature other than style… 1.Vision of life both as a kind of perpetual battlefield where everyone is eventually wounded and as a game with almost formal moves. 2.Hemingway hero---a man for whom it is a point of honor to suffer with grace and dignity, and who, though sensing that defeat is inevitable, plays the game well.
Wars influence Wanted to join WWI, but was rejected b/c of eye injury Later joined the Red Cross ambulance corps and sent to Italian front Severely wounded by artillery shell and recovered for 3 months in hospital in Milan This injury proved significant to his works, as he began to consider ways man can be wounded in peacetime as well as on a battlefield.
Themes and Motifs Theme is the fundamental, often universal idea of the work. Motifs are recurring structures, devices, etc. used to develop, elaborate, or illustrate the theme.
Major Themes in Hemingways Works The Nada Concept Chance and Accident Illusions, realities, true values The undefeated and the code of conduct
The Nada Concept Nada (nothing is out there for you) Man is born into a naturalistic and indifferent universe that has no purpose, meaning, order, or value nada is then focused on 1. mans confrontation with the absence of God 2. indifference and hostility of the universe 3. absence of purpose, order, meaning, value
Motifs for Nada Death---is inevitable and ever present Darkness & Disorder---chaos, unknowability, and hostility of universe. War or violent encounter---ever-present pain and death Bad Nerves---the recognition of nada brings on fear, anxiety, & loss of control Insomnia---symbol of mans attempt to, and his inability to, stop thinking about nada Despair---absence of hope and confidence
Chance and Accident Man is a victim of the irrational and hostile workings of chance and accident, which only bring about pain, destruction, loss, and death
Motifs for Chance and Accident The Unreasonable Wound---unexpected and irrational injury (war influence) The Unreasonable Death---unexpected and senseless The Unreasonable Loss---permanent loss of an ability or loss of a loved one. Bad Luck
Illusions, Realities, True Values There is no God and the universe is therefore morally indifferent…there are no governing values that man can use to direct his life. Traditional religious and philisophical explanations of the universe are simply illusions invented by men to maintain their social institutions (these are false and misleading)
Values and ideals of the Christian World have been destroyed by realities of WWI
Since there are no absolute values, individual true values are only determined by experiences that: –Give one immediate pleasure (perhaps why Hemingway was a ladies man) –Heightened emotional intensity---risk, love, danger (perhaps the sportsman in him) –Helps one develop self-control Values are immediate (gives pleasure) and practical (serves no significance beyond the pleasure, intensity, or self-control they give) Relates back to existentialism
The Undefeated and Code of Conduct Man has no control over his fate, but he can control how he confronts his fate and responds to chance, accident, destruction. Man may be victimized and finally destroyed, yet remain undefeated by refusing to give in to that destruction. –Santiago (The Old Man and the Sea) says, A man can be destroyed but not defeated.
Code Hero and Code of Conduct Confronts/faces nada with dignity, which is true moral integrity defined by oneself, not society) Shows grace under pressure Accepts that death is unavoidable, but confronts it on his own terms. Is a man of action, but will not talk about his actions Detests mediocrity Devoted to smaller, intimate group of men much like himself
Code Hero Characteristics Self-disciplined Knowledgeable Skillful Poised Honest Courageous Persistent Stoic (Hemingway would reject these abstract qualities) Because experiences man has help him to create order and values, each new experience is a test Just because a man was courageous for one moment (ie: wartime) does not mean he is a courageous man Experience dependent
Motifs for the Undefeated Ritual---patterned behavior to help impose order & purpose Grace under pressure---conducts self according to the rules of sport, art, profession The artist-sportsman---symbol of dignity and uncompromising compliance with the code Clean, well-lighted places---illumination of values-the way to create order and purpose
3 Types of Hemingway Characters Anti-Hero –Blind to the reality of nada; lives according to illusions, false values, impulses; either stupid/messy, idealistic & deluded, or self-centered & destructive. Apprentice Hero –Recognized nada but struggle with the fear, anxiety, and loss of control this recognition brings –Or, are in the process of learning the nature of true values and requirements of the code.
Code Hero –Recognized and accepted the reality of nada –Learned the nature of true values (they come from how you handle yourself with each experience) –Live in compliance with the code –Emphasizes the here and now b/c when youre dead youre dead and there really is no reward after death. Duty is to avoid death at all costs
Video Clips American Masters on PBS---Commentary from variety of sources on Hemingway (free Real Player needed)American Masters on PBS- –Ann Douglas –Sandra Spanier –Valerie Hemingway
Significant works In Our Time---1925; collection of short stories; 1 st to reach general audience The Sun Also Rises---created wide audience base ---This novel, about a group of expatriates looking for sensations that would allow them to forget about pain of living life, gave a new phrase to describe those disillusioned with wars ideals: the lost generation
A Farewell to Arms---about war and romance growing out of it. For Whom the Bell Tolls---Hemingway was regarded as the original hero of his works (Robert Jordan). This book concentrated not on the ordeals of personal existence, but rather emphasized individual fate and the lot of humanity The Old Man and the Sea---return to old theme of testing the individual and mans acceptance of his fate.
Nobel Prize for Literature-1954 Died in 1961 of self-inflicted gun shot wound
Old Man and the Sea Of The Old Man and the Sea he explains: "In writing you are limited to by what has already been done satisfactorily. So I have tried to do something else. First I have tried to eliminate everything unnecessary to conveying experience to the reader so that after he has read something it will become part of his experience and seem actually to have happened."The Old Man and the Sea
When asked about the use of symbolism in his work, and particularly in the most recently published Old Man and the Sea, he explained: "No good book has ever been written that has in it symbols arrived at beforehand and stuck in...That kind of symbol sticks out like raisins in raisin bread. Raisin bread is all right, but plain bread is better....I tried to make a real old man, a real boy, a real sea, a real fish and real sharks. But if I made them good and true enough they would mean many things. The hardest thing is to make something really true and sometimes truer than true." "An American Storyteller". Time Magazine. Time, Inc.. 13 December 1954. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,935439-5,00.html. "An American Storyteller" http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,935439-5,00.html