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Ernest Miller Hemingway

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1. Biography of Ernest Miller Hemingway

"Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter. You will meet them doing various things with resolve, but their interest rarely holds because after the other thing ordinary life is as flat as the taste of wine when the taste buds have been burned off your tongue." ('On the Blue Water' in Esquire, April 1936)

A legendary novelist, short-story writer and essayist Ernest Miller Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899, in the village of Oak Park, Illinois, close to the prairies and woods west of Chicago. His mother Grace Hall had an operatic career before marrying Dr. Clarence Edmonds Hemingway. While growing up, the young Hemingway spent lots of his time hunting and fishing with his physician father, Dr. Clarence Hemingway, and learned about the ways of music with his mother, who was a musician and artist. He was the second of Clarence and Grace Hemingway's six children. He was raised in a strict Protestant community that tried as hard as possible to be separate themselves from the big city of Chicago, though they were very close geographically. Both parents and their nearby families fostered the Victorian priorities of the time: religion, family, work and discipline. They followed the Victorians' elaborate sentimental style in living and writing. He attended school in the Oak Park Public School system and in high school, Hemingway played sports and wrote for the school newspaper. At Oak Park and River Forest High School, Ernest reported and wrote articles, poems and stories for the school's publications largely based on his direct experiences. Hemingway was awarded the 1954 Nobel Prize for Literature. He was unable to attend the award ceremony in Stockholm, because he was recuperating from injuries sustained in an airplane crash while hunting in Uganda. In July, 1961, he ended his life in Ketchum, Idaho.

Hemingway may have been a homosexual in denial. His determination to keep up his manhood's "good name" may have been a decoy to hide his true homosexuality. As a Rolling Stone article notes, his son was in fact gay. Perhaps he got it genetically from his father, Ernest Hemingway. Many things were repeated in that family. Hemingway, the depressed drunk, committed suicide just like his father. However, there were different reasons. Hemingway's father took his own life in 1928 after losing his healt to diabetes and his money in the Florida real-estate bubble. After Hemingway's depression he was sent to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. There he received electroshock therapy that impaired his memory and stripped from him the concentration to write. Hemingway also lost the ability to do other things he so loved like fish and hunt. So perhaps he killed himself because Ernest Hemingway could no longer "be" Ernest Hemingway.

2. Hemingway's works

Ernest Hemingway started his career as a writer in a newspaper office in Kansas City at the age of seventeen. Here he learned to get to the heart of a story with direct, simple sentences. After the United States entered the First World War, he joined a volunteer ambulance unit in the Italian army. Here he was wounded near the Italian/Austrian front. Hospitalized, he fell in love with his nurse, who later called off their relationship. After his return to the United States, he became a reporter for Canadian and American newspapers and was soon sent back to Europe to cover such events as the Greek Revolution. During the twenties, Hemingway became a member of the group of expatriate Americans in Paris, which he described in his first important work 'The Sun Also Rises' (1926).

After the World War I, Hemingway lived in Chicago. There, he met Sherwood Andersen and married Hadley Richardson in 1921. On Andersen's advice, the couple moved to Paris, where he served as foreign correspondent for the Star. As Hemingway covered events on all of Europe, the young reporter interviewed important leaders such as Lloyd George, Clemenceau, and Mussolini. Hemingway lived in Paris from 1921-1926. This time of stylistic development for Hemingway reaches its zenith in 1923 with the publication of 'Three Stories' and 'Ten Poems' by Robert McAlmon in Paris and the birth of his son John. This time in Paris inspired the novel 'A Moveable Feast'.

In 1927 Hemingway published a short story collection, 'Men Without Women'. So too, in that year he divorced Hadley Richardson and married Pauline, a write for Vogue. In 1928 they moved to Key West, where sons Patrick and Gregory were born. After the publication of 'Men Without Women' Hemingway returned to the United States, settling in Key West, Florida. Hemingway and Hadley divorced in 1927 and on the same year he married Pauline, a fashion editor.

These dramatic personal events against the backdrop of a brutal war became the basis of Hemingway's first widely successful novel 'A Farewell to Arms' published in 1929. The scene of the story is the Italian front in World War I, where two lovers find a brief happiness. It is about the study of an American ambulance officer's disillusionment in the war and his role as a deserter. After growing success with his groundbreaking style, Hemingway wrote out of his own direct experience about bullfighting, big game hunting and deep sea fishing on three continents. In addition to personal experiences with war and death, Hemingway's extensive travel in pursuit of hunting and other sports provided ample material for his novels. Bullfighting inspired Death in the Afternoon, published in 1932. In 1934, Hemingway went on safari in Africa, which gave him new themes and scenes on which to base 'The Green Hills of Africa', published in 1935. Wallace Stevens once termed Hemingway "the most significant of living poets, so far as the subject of extraordinary reality is concerned." By 'poet' Stevens referred to Hemingway's stylistic achievements in the short story. Among his most famous stories is 'The Snows of Kilimanjaro' (1935) which begins with an epitaph telling that the western summit of the mountain is called the House of God, and close to it was found the carcass



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