White Elephant

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Drake Lovvorn
Mrs. Hudson
English 2
February 27, 13

In Ernest Hemingway’s short story “Hills like White Elephants” the story is tolled through two main protagonists. The woman that is only called by the name of Jig, and the man who throughout the story is called the American. It takes place at a rural railway station in Spain in the middle of the two railroad tracks at the bar. On one side of the tracks is a barren land that has nothing growing where theirs never any shade from the sun, on the other side of the tracks however are fields of grain and trees along the banks of the river, and beyond the river there are mountains. The main problem that the women “Jig” seam’s to be faced with in the story is abortion. She must make a decision of life or death for her unborn child.

In the beginning of this story Jig and the American are at the train station waiting on their train. They decide to have a drink at the bar, while their waiting Jig states that the hills “they look like white elephants” Pg. (229). The Americans dry response and her disappointed reaction show the story’s issue. Jig then see’s writing on the beads hanging in the doorway and realizes that it is a drink. They then order the drinks but when their finished Jig says that “It tastes like licorice. That’s the way with everything.” Pg. (230). I think what she is saying that they keep on doing the same thing’s and like the black licorice tasting drink its leaving a bad taste in her mouth and that she doesn’t want to keep living this way. Another way to put it is even though it may seem fun in the beginning she always feels disappointed by the end.

The American then brings up the operation saying, “ It’s really an awfully simple operation Jig. Its really not an operation at all.” Pg (230). The American seems to be very manipulative about how he goes about trying to get Jig to go through with the abortion. The American then goes on to tell her how it is perfectly natural and how she wouldn’t...
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