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Symbolism In Hills Like White Elephants, By Ernest Hemingway

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The use of symbolism in Hemingway’s, Hills like white elephants, provides the reader with situations a couple may face at least once in their life. There are many symbols within this short story, some more complex than others. Knowing the different symbols, can ultimately lead up to the discovery of the real meaning in the story. Hemingway never gives us an easy explanation in this story, forcing the reader to make wild assumptions. Since this story requires readers to read between the lines and think more complex, Hemingway gives us symbols so readers can understand the overall meaning of the story. Hemingway points out many of the symbols used by mainly repetition, which make them very important. Some symbolism shown in this story is: the white elephants, the train station, and scenery. The main symbol in this story is not hard to find, since it is right in the title. All throughout the story we can see these so called “white elephants” being referenced. Although the reference to white elephants may seem like just a thought coming from Jig, it really symbolizes something big in the story. In some cultures, people view white elephants as an unwanted thing, or an uncomfortable subject. Hemingway relates these white elephants to the unwanted conversation about Jig’s abortion. At first glance, readers may not know what these two characters are talking about, but later in the story we can get a better idea of what they are talking about.
Right in the first twenty lines we can
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