Relationships In Ernest Hemingway's Hills Like White Elephants

853 Words4 Pages
Relationships are the core of everything we do in life. We love someone, so we do something for them; we value someone 's opinion, so we respect them; we dislike someone, so we avoid them. Relationships cause people to act on their emotions which impact how and why they do the things they do. Ernest Hemingway’s short story “Hills Like White Elephants” is about a couple trying to come to a conclusion on a delicate matter. While the man strongly promotes his opinion the girl is hesitant but wants to do whatever will make him happy. The struggles presented between these two characters bring to light issues in human relationships that weigh into everyday life. Hemingway’s short story reveals to readers how relationships affect communication, decision…show more content…
The man is manipulating her through his words to get his girl to go through with the operation. First, he brings up the operation and goes on to say that “It’s really an awfully simple operation”(42) hinting at the fact that it is easily done and not a big deal at all. Secondly, the man uses the idea of happiness to win her over in this decision, “That’s the only thing that bothers us. It’s the only thing that’s made us unhappy”(50) he is manipulating her into thinking that this operation will revive their happiness they once shared in this relationship. Thirdly, he tries to normalize the operation to make her feel like it’s a common thing, no big deal, he tells her she doesn’t “have to be afraid. [he’s] known lots of people that have it done”(53). After all of these comments he made to convince her of his decision he tries to play it off like he wants her to do whatever she feels is right. The final key to manipulation: make it seem like it was her decision when in reality he manipulated her into making this choice all along. Manipulation is unfortunately a common theme in relationships and this short story does an incredible job by shining light on that issue in human relationships. Ultimately, relationships affect our everyday lives in every way possible. Whether the decision you’re making is big or small your relationship will weigh into your choice in some way. Not all relationships
Open Document