In Hills Like White Elephants, the story opens up with a description of the scenery. There is a couple that is at a train station at a bar going somewhere far. Throughout the story, the couple is having a conversation about something that is never mentioned. However, by paying attention to the characters, the language, and the symbolism, one can see that the conversation is about an abortion and that the couple’s relationship is falling apart. Ernest Hemingway uses characters, sexism, and the setting and symbolism to give the readers a chance to know couple and see their broken relationship.
The style of writing forgoes in-depth characters and background knowledge. However, Jig shows more emotional connections than the unnamed man in the story. Therefore compelling me to sympathize more with Jig, over the man. Evidence shows that Jig may wish to keep the baby she is carrying and is only going through with the mentioned abortion in order to please the man, shown in the exert “‘That’s the only thing that bothers us. It’s the only thing that’s made us unhappy.’… ‘So have I,’ said the girl. ‘And afterwards they were all so happy.’” along with “‘I know. But if I do it, then it will be nice again if I say things are like white elephants, and you’ll like it?’”. Jig also displays a subtle defiance to the man, which proves that there may be more problems than the story depicts. For example “‘I’ve never seen one,’ the man drank his beer. ‘No, you wouldn’t have.’” My sympathy with Jig is strongly cemented by the sentence “‘I feel fine,’ she said. ‘There’s nothing wrong with me. I feel fine.’” where Jig closes the story with a more sarcastic response to being well, making me believe that the girl has hit a limit to her willingness to please the
Both of these short novels told stories about couples with relationship issues. Both stories spoke of people with conflicting interests. In "Hills like White Elephants" the girl Jig, loved The American and wanted to have his child. I feel as if she might have seen the child as something that would strengthen her and The American’s bond. The only actual want or care the American seemed to portray was that he just wanted things to go back to normal between the two. To me it was as if he didn’t want any strings attached to the relations he was having with this girl. I felt as if Jig cared more about The American than he cared for her. I also think that if the American hadn’t said anything to Jig about having an abortion and simply allowed her to have the child; they would have more than likely ended up like the couple in Bobbie Ann Mason’s story, where they would run out of things to say and eventually end up parting ways because of either their different wants out of life or their conflicting views on issues would have kept getting in the way. There were also various dissimilarities between the characters Leroy and Norma Jean in the story “Shiloh”. In "Shiloh" the woman Norma is pushing herself to become a better person; she works out, goes to school and practices her music. Her husband enjoys sitting around, building models, and smoking weed. They were two people going
He tells her that she does not have to have the operation, but tells her it is the best thing to do. The girl begins to think, “And if I do it you'll be happy and things will be okay like they were and you'll love me” (Hemingway 107)? He reassures her that he loves her now. Jig is more realistic about the situation and the consequences in front of her. She knows that she is going to make the ultimate decision, although she is asking for reassurance from the American(Short Stories for Students). The girl also knows that regardless of her situation, their relationship might not work out anyway. The choice to abort or not abort the baby ultimately leaves her with the same consequence: life without the American.
Like most stories, the women are mostly known for their vulnerability and being less powerful than men; this is one of the major comparisons between these two different works. In “Hills like White Elephants”, the foreign woman Jig, and her boyfriend the American, are contemplating on going through with an operation, seeking to be an abortion. Hemingway demonstrates to the reader hands on how much Jig depends a lot on the American. Since she couldn’t even order herself something to drink without him, let alone make such a difficult decision. The American, otherwise known as the more stronger character, knows exactly what he wants and sticks by his choice when filling the girl’s mind with promises of being happy and being able to go back to the way things used to be. Because of Hemingway’s “iceberg theory” distracts most of the
The setting of the two stories, is similar in that it presents the gradual sequences of the plot, and the deterioration of the couple's relationship. In “Hills Like White Elephants”, the setting represents a junction in the relationship between the couple: “The hills across the valley of the Ebro were long and white. On this
In both stories, the major underlying thematic base is the powerlessness and vulnerability the female characters have under the dominance of the men in their lives. In “Hills like White Elephants,” the girl, who we know as Jig, and her partner, known as the America, are discussing the possibility of an operation; the reader can infer this operation to be an abortion. Hemingway makes it a point to establish the dependence Jig has on the American by
“Hills like White Elephants,” written by Ernest Hemingway is a short story about two characters and their’s turning and twisting arguments about an operation and also how the settings affect on both this characters perspective and attitude toward the abortion. The story begins at the train station somewhere in Spain where this couple waiting for a train to Madrid and discussing whether to keep baby or no. While in the stations, different events take place as highlighted by the author of the story where the girl explore surrounding of the train station and compare each thing with her situation such as the nearby rail tracks, trees, river, the hills, alcohol. On the other hand, the American responds by stating that he has never come across white elephants and refuse her perspective and shows his decision to not have a baby. The two characters continue ordering more drinks while having their discussion. In a nutshell, the story “Hills like White Elephants,” is a short story about a young girl name Jig and American man who waiting for a train and discussing about whether a girl have an abortion or no, based on abortion, there is a conflict of their relationship derived on the environmental setting of the short story.
Have you ever been forced to make a life altering decision? A decision where you much choose one option or the other? The short story Hills Like White Elephants depict a situation in which many, if not all readers can relate to at one point in their lives. The author Ernest Hemingway describes this scenario with a young couple who are at a crossroads in their life, and they are unsure of the future. The young couple are forced, but shying away from the rather large “white elephant in the room”, deciding to go through with having a child or an abortion. The theme in Hills Like White Elephants is expressed using typical thematic literary elements. Hemingway uses elements such as character, setting, conflict,
There are many ways, shapes, and forms of stories that the reader could put themselves into. Whether they choose to partake in a wayward journey full of adventure or the daily life of a human being with morals; a story’s aspect influences those thoughts with a deeper understanding. In Ernest Hemingway’s “Hills Like White Elephants,” it follows an American man and girl at a resting point during their travels. They arrived by train, stopping between Barcelona and Madrid. While there, they patiently waited for the next train at a bar inside of the station. They invoked themselves in a very long conversation about an important life changing decision, in which they are trying to figure out together. With narration providing the readers a first-class seat within the story, it is as if they were customers at the bar that happens to listen. This story unravels the true intention of the character’s issue that is deeply hidden within the text and title symbolically. Therefore, the literary terms that makes this story unique is its symbolism, conflict, and narrative point of view.
The conversation between them begins as a thinly veiled, simple and shallow one, with each being quite sarcastic at times. With little or no emotion, the American tries to convince the girl that an abortion is the right choice for her to make, under the circumstances. When pressed for confirmation that he will continue to love her after such an operation, the American continuously stays uncommitted to anything except that the procedure is safe and should be her act of choice. The girl looks for any word or gesture that would symbolize real love or anything deeper than just a casual relationship between them, though finds none, so the apparent disappointment continues to prevail in her attitude. At one point he becomes very condescending "Come on back in the shade," he said. "You mustn't feel that way" (para. 83). The significance of this conflict is that the American really seems not to love the girl, though he tells her he does. He also repeats several times that she does not need to go through with the abortion, if she prefers not to, though he never commits to raising a child with her. This sets up conflict within herself emphasized by Jig declaring she will not care about herself any longer "Oh, yes. But I don't care about me. And I'll do it and then everything will be fine"
To sum up the plot of the story, an American and another woman are discussing their future together. The main focus of their conversation falls on the woman and how she is pregnant. Throughout the story The American continues to refer to an operation for his significant other to have; we conclude that Jig is with child. As the American is aggressive towards his partner having the operation, he represents society and the continuing pressure/down playing of abortion and the effects that take place afterwards. The American goes as far to say “’I know you wouldn’t mind it, Jig.
There have always been many heated discussions about women’s positions in society. Many believe that males are the dominant species and that women must obey their commands, this can be also referred to as the notion of patriarchy. It is morally wrong when one has to think of taking the life of a baby to make a man happy. The short story introduces, a girl named Jig and her older American lover that sit at a train station in a Spanish valley, varying from different emotions throughout their conversation to whether or not they should continue to Barcelona in order to abort their unborn baby. The American, views this operation as a resolution to their hardships, and attempts to persuade Jig that it is the correct thing to do. In a society where
The plot focuses on crossing boundaries. The two characters, The American and a woman nicknamed “Jig”, are constantly wavering middle grounds. It’s a story about communication and conversation. Though they are having a conversation the couple is not communicating. The story implements ambiguity and subtlety to discuss, though never clearly stated, an abortion. The couple arrives at a train station in Madrid. It is assumed only passing through, they decide to have a drink while they wait for the next train. The woman mentions the hills resembling white elephants and notices the infertile barren land in comparison to the green hills in the valley on the other side of the tracks. There is little conversation till the American man hints on an operation. There is
Second, the theme between these two stories are also on opposite spectrums. In “Hills Like White Elephants” the theme is that the couple, the American man and the girl, can not communicate well with each other, it is more of just talking and not really listening to what the other has to say. An instance of this occurring in “Hills Like White Elephants” is when the man articulates to the girl “We can have everything” (Hemingway, 125) and the girl says to him “No, we can’t” (Hemingway, 125) referring to how he has not made any real indication of wanting to be with her except in that moment, creating the illusion of disaster if a child were to grow up in this type of environment. However, in “The Grasshopper and The Bell Cricket” the theme that