Ernest Hemingway's Writing Style

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  • Topic: Writing, Ernest Hemingway, Emotion
  • Pages : 2 (571 words )
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  • Published : August 28, 2010
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Ernest Hemingway once wrote ‘If a writer of prose knows enough of what he is writing about he may omit things that he knows and the reader, if the writer is writing truly enough, will have a feeling of those things as strongly as though the writer had stated them. The dignity of movement of an ice-berg is due to only one-eighth of it being above water. A writer who omits things because he does not know them only makes hollow places in his writing.’ This is one of Hemingway’s most potent qualities as he is able to paint an extremely large picture, using a very small canvas. PhD student Daniel Wood states in regard to this principle “After just a moment’s contemplation, then, a handful of carefully chosen words can yield great depths of meaning and allow us to glimpse a narrative far more elaborate than what actually appears on the page”. As a frame for this ‘iceberg theory’, Hemingway uses his life experiences, and drew them out further with "what if" scenarios, like for example ‘what if I was injured and then returned to the front’. The last scene strongly reflects the ‘iceberg principle’, where Henry walks from the hospital into the rain after Catherine dies. Does his walk alone in the rain represent emotional freedom or devastation? This scene is full of symbolism; hence the portion of iceberg beneath the surface is immense. The ‘six word story’ demonstrates the power of the ‘iceberg principle’, even though it is debatably not Hemingway’s creation. This story is an incomparable example of this principle, for such a minute piece of writing paints a much larger picture. Hemingway’s style of writing is notorious for the use of a specific code that the protagonist abides. This is known as the ‘code hero’, and Hemingway’s style of writing is depicted through the use of his code hero. In reference to A Farewell to Arms, Hemingway writes ‘I opened up my holster, took the pistol, aimed at the one who had talked the most, and fired. I missed and they both started to...
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