Hills Like White Elephants Literary Analysis

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The work of Ernest Hemingway offers the reader a chance to dwell in the world of struggle and decision-making. Moreover, the interaction between the girl and the American keenly reveals a sense of insecurity within a relationship built on persistent distractions. In “Hills Like White Elephants,” Hemingway uses simplicity in conversation, essential symbolism, and character development to expose the couple’s immaturity and the choice between romance and family. Hemingway effectively disguises the growing tension between the girl and the American through idle conversation. Several instances demonstrated the uncomfortable air that surrounded the two. The reader derives this from the key component of heat. The girl, ultimately leading the conversation, conversed about anything she could think of including the delicate writing on the beads, the hills outside, and the alcohol they drank. As the relationship is male dominant, the girl mainly asks “yes” or “no” questions in hopes of engaging the American. However, there is nothing substantial holding their relationship together. As Hemingway wrote, “That’s all we do, isn’t it -- look at things and try new drinks?” (Hemingway 476). The reader infers the girl’s desperation to stay with the American through her pleading and submissiveness. Her insecurity draws her away from reality as she willingly becomes docile in hopes to keep the American at her side, even if it means she has to give up her baby. The blundering small talk about
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