The Old Man and the Sea

Decent Essays
The Old Man and the Sea is a short, but rich novel about an old fisherman who, after eighty-four unsuccessful days in a row, hooks the largest fish of his life. Written by Ernest Hemingway in 1951, and published in 1952, the novel was the last of Hemingway’s novels to be published during his lifetime. The book was praised by critics, and became an immediate success. The story was also awarded the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and was a factor in Hemingway winning a Nobel Prize. The story was published after Across the River and into the Trees, a Hemingway novel that was almost universally panned by critics. The Old Man and the Sea bolstered Hemingway’s somewhat tarnished reputation, and reestablished him as an elite American author.
…show more content…
Santiago finally reels the fish to the side of the boat and harpoons it. Although he has won the battle with the fish, the blood from the harpoon wound inevitably attracts sharks. They come in waves, as the old man tries to fight them off. Little by little, they take the meat of the fish, until Santiago is left with only a carcass. The next morning, people are gathered, looking at the giant skeleton of the fish. The boy goes to the old man’s shack and consoles him, promising to always fish with him regardless of what his parents say. The old man then goes to sleep and dreams of lions.
The Old Man and the Sea is a simple yet powerful tale. Although on the surface it’s about a man and his battle with a huge marlin, the heart of the story is Santiago’s ability to endure. The old man has been enduring a drought of luck. Although he has gone eighty-four days without a fish, he still maintains his same routine of careful preparation each day. The old man takes pride in his craft, and makes sure his equipment and supplies are thoroughly maintained every day. Although the people in town may call him salao, he knows that his skill is more important than luck. He endures his fishless streak with a quiet dignity, being mindful of his craft so that he could not blame himself for being unsuccessful.
The old man also endures
Get Access