For Whom the Bell Tolls

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Weaponless War
At the end of a person’s life, when death knocks upon the doors of heaven and hell, every individual has an epiphany. What if time could fast-forward itself to grasp the understanding of life, of which is comprehended only in the epiphany at the end of each person’s time? An ongoing skirmish occurs in every man’s mentality, victory, never found, until death is upon the individual. Ernest Hemmingway’s main character, Robert Jordan, in his novel, For Whom the Bell Tolls, portrays his internal war with death through imagery, personification, and symbolism.

When at war in a foreign country, images of recollections are the thread that attaches an entity to authentic life and contentment, as does the same coping mechanism when one bathes in the river of Styx in Greek Mythology. Memories deluge throughout Robert Jordan’s mind as he opens his essence to Maria, confiding himself in her, elucidating his father’s warfare with bereavement and his catastrophic failure “… to avoid being tortured” Maria states in full understanding with a connotation of empathy (67). Imagining a world with no fear, Robert Jordan lives his life in the utopia of fearlessness. Pilar questions Robert Jordan in his personal psychological utopia perplexing his concerns of fatality; he lives life anesthetized from trepidation of naught (91). In the mind of Robert Jordan, a labyrinth of isolation dwells seeming indefinite and unscathed (264). Robert Jordan is an unfounded island; Maria is the captain of the ship that searches for the impracticable, resulting in the upmost cliché termination. Maria uncovers things of which not even Robert Jordan knew of himself, including the characteristics that enclose his faults.

Nerves can compose or rupture an entire human being in war; Pilar questions Robert Jordan’s nerves in regards to the bridge annihilation. He defensively retorts to Pilar confirming his nerves were all right and subtly commanded her to go to the Gredos (149). Painting a...
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