Moral Conflicts In 'Good PeopleAndHills Like White Elephants'

Decent Essays

Major characters in stories often encounter moral conflicts. The way in which the characters respond to these dilemmas frequently emphasizes the author’s intended message. In “Good People”, written by David Foster Wallace, a young Christian couple is faced with an unplanned pregnancy, forcing them to make a decision regarding the termination of the child; causing them to battle with several moral and religious predicaments. Wallace mimics the anxiousness of a 19-year-old male through an unorganized style of writing and uses various details to illuminate the underlying message of the story. Similarly, in Ernest Hemingway’s “Hills Like White Elephants”, a man, referred to as the American and a women named Jig deal with an unexpected pregnancy, disrupting the normality of their relationship. Through symbolism, Hemingway is able to connote the limitation of language and demonstrate the complications the couple faces. In the short stories “Good People” and “Hills Like White Elephants”, both authors use literary techniques to reveal the struggles of communication, as well as the complexity of making choices.
The two main characters of “Good People”, Lane and Sheri face both external and internal conflicts concerning morals and religion. Externally, the couple deals with the decision of getting an abortion while internally questioning love, life, and faith. Lane A. Dean and Sheri are initially introduced as particularly proper people, wearing “blue jeans and button-up shirts”.

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