A Whole Novel Or Many Short Stories, The Answer Is
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A Whole Novel Or Many Short Stories, The Answer Is Ernest Hemingway
Word Count: 2002
Ernest Hemingway has written many books, which have heralded him as a great author, but there is one novel that seems to have questions swirling about it, In Our Time. In this novel the main character is in question, you are unable to tell right away whether the chapters/stories are linked together as a novel, or if they are all separate short stories. Having read the book, and having done a background check on Ernest Hemingway the person, it is apparent that the stories are linked together and have a main character, Nick Adams, that progresses as the novel moves along. The first example is the way the life of the main character, Nick Adam, mimics Hemingway’s own life. There are far too many similarities between Nick Adam’s life and Hemingway’s life. Second, in reading the book, the reader can see the way Nick Adams grows as a person. This is not only because there is a direct link between chapters, but also there is foreshadowing, and there are the same characters used throughout the book.
Ernest Hemingway’s In Our Time directly parallels Hemingway’s own life. The chapters are linked together in a way, though they are not linked through Nick Adams, who is the most mentioned character and is described the most in detail. The first section of stories is definitely linked, by the use of the same characters and the development of the characters. In some of the stories there are direct referrals to the previous story. As the reader reaches the middle of the book the connections start to diminish. The characters change, but the stories still follows Hemingway’s own life. It is as if the reader is following Nick, but in an indirect method. Nick is the same person, simply with a different name: such as Kreb, Mr. Elliot, and he. Many of the chapters have the pronoun “he” as opposed to an actual name. Towards the end of the book, the story refers back to the character Nick, and his development. This development again follows Hemingway’s own life, and his healing from such things as being a participant in World War I.
There are many parallels to Hemingway’s life and his main character’s development. First in “Indian Camp” chapter one, we are introduced to Nick Adams and his father. They are on a boat going to an Indian camp to operate on a woman who cannot deliver her baby. The simple connection to Hemingway’s life is that his father was a doctor, Dr. Clarence Hemingway. In “Indian Camp” you see other connection between Nick and his father, in real life Hemingway definitely had a connection with his
Father. It has also been documented that Hemingway’s father taught Ernest to fish and hunt. And in the book Nick’s ability to fish, shown in the story “The End of Something”, which he was taught by his father.
The next main point occurs in “The End of Something,” the setting for this story takes place on Hortons Bay. In Hemingway’s life his parents had a summerhouse on Hortons Bay. Hemingway just placed part of his own life into the book; this is merely a prime example of the similarities of living between the character Nick and Hemingway’s own life. There are more direct references to Hemingway’s own life. In “Soldier’s Return,” the main character is Kreb. In the story, Kreb returns from World War I in the summer of 1919, and is soon pressured by his parents to do something with his life. Now in Hemingway’s life he returned from World War I in January of 1919, and was pressured by his parent to do something with his life. The examples and connections between Hemingway’s life and the book grow.
Hemingway’s first wife was almost Fifteen years older than he was. This parallels the book once again, “Mr. and Mrs. Elliot”, in this story they are newly weds, Mr. Elliot is twenty-five, and Mrs. Elliot is forty years old. In the next chapter we meet another couple, unnamed, a man and his wife. In this chapter the man and wife seem to have a lackluster relationship; the husband does not notice the wife all that much. It can be concluded
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Ernest Hemingway, Indian Camp, The End of Something, In Our Time, Nick Adams, The Battler, Hemingway, Mr. and Mrs. Elliot, Big Two-Hearted River, Across the River and into the Trees
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