Old Man in the Sea

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Old Man and the Sea Essay
In Ernest Hemingway’s novel, The Old Man and the Sea, a Cuban man named Santiago goes out on a fishing voyage trying to break his bad luck of going 84 days without a catch. Santiago is only dependent on his strength and willpower, while alone at sea. During this time, Hemingway portrays the old man as someone dissatisfied with isolation, creating for himself the illusion of company by prattling amongst himself. At the start of the text, Santiago is joined by a fisherman of adolescence named Manolin. It seemed like he had it all figured out with youth on his side until 40 days had passed and the two were fish-less. The boy could no longer accompany him after that point since he was trying to make a living, forcing Santiago into isolation due to his bad luck. The remaining days were spent alone in a small skiff with nothing but fishing supplies and a mind of his own. “He did not remember when he had first started to talk aloud when he was by himself. He had sung when he was by himself in the old days and he had sung at night sometimes when he was alone steering on his watch in the smacks or in the turtle boats. He had probably started to talk aloud, when alone, when the boy had left. He said his thoughts aloud many times since there was no one that they could annoy.”(35)

Although the old man is isolated from others he never completely feels alone. In fact, that is what got him through and kept him sane while embarking on his journey. He knows that even after being gone for days, that people back home believe in him and that he will be coming home with a fish. By telling himself that he has people looking out for him and wishing him well why away, Santiago has the willpower to escape being alone. “I hope no one has been too worried. There is only the boy to worry, of course. But I am sure he would have confidence. Many of the older fishermen will worry. Many others too, he thought. I live in a good town.” (85) Later on in the...
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