Ernest Miller Hemingway

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Ernest Miller Hemingway, a celebrated author of the 20th century, was a legend of unsurpassable ability. The man was not only a star in the literary world but also a warrior who revealed to his readers, admirers, and the world the transparency of a life worth living as a supporter of the modest pleasures of life.

On July 21, 1989, Hemingway was born in Oak Park, Illinois, while spending the summer at Lake Walloon in Northern Michigan. He found his earliest writings in Oak Park, which included the unanticipated pathos and tragedy that the local Indians went through. This included the hunters and fishers consciousness of life and death; and the adroit empathic witness, which he found in himself; thus, ending up loving activities like hunting, fishing, painting, and writing. After finishing high school in 1917, he did not attend college since he opted to work as Kansas City Star cub reporter before joining Red Cross as their driver (Ernest Hemingway, 2013).

Hemingway was brought up in an upper-middle class family in Chicago Suburb of Oak Park. His father, Dr. Clarence Hemingway, was a general practitioner and mother, Grace Hall-Hemingway, was a vocal teacher and a feminist who income was larger than his father. For many years, he was a lone male child in a family of four girls. He was brought up in a strict family whereby his mother dominated their family and insisted that all her children be taught in dance and arts. At a point when Ernest gave her a copy of his introductory book that he had published, she sent her in return a copy of her paintings. At a point, Dr. Hemingway forced Ernest to cook and eat a porcupine, which he had killed to teach him a lesson not to kill harmless animals. That sounds a bit rude and being irresponsible to a child; I believe his parents were the whole bunch of dictators.

However, he had the love for his father since he taught him how to love nature, which was his passion too. Nevertheless, his father shot himself in 1928 after suffering from depression, anxiety, and rage for a period (Ernest Hemingway, 1996). I believe the way he was brought up by strict parents and the way his father shot himself affected his childhood up to adulthood thus developing same symptoms of her father from depression to rage thus also committing suicide in the end.

During World War I, Hemingway did not fight with the Arditi but volunteered to represent his country in Italy by offering to be a Red Cross ambulance driver. In July 1918, he was injured while distributing cigarettes and chocolate to the Italian troops. However, in spite of having severe wounds, he managed to rescue a wounded soldier and ended up also being in the leg while carrying the soldier. This heroic act made him earn the Italy’s second highest award for valor, the Silver medal written TENENTE ERNESTO HEMINGWAY. Conversely, despite returning to America safely, he developed a life-long trauma of the war event and being shot. He suffered from insomnia thus was afraid of sleeping while lights were off. Nonetheless, I believe Hemingway style of writing changed due to the experience he acquired in the WWI. After the war, he lost faith in Western civilization central institution thus creating a new style which involved actions, dialogues, and fiction in which nothing significant or very dismal is stated explicitly.

Career: How he began writing

After Hemingway had finished high school in 1917, he decided to work as a cub reporter in Kansas City Star whereby he developed a short style of writing. His early writing evolved around terror of death, wounds, and violence. The honesty he portrayed in naked emotion made him to be recognized as an upcoming modern writer.

Early works

His first fiction novel includes “In Our Time” (1924), which made use of non-literal material heretofore of bullfighting, camping, and fishing. The book is well written and it all the elements presented had been experienced by the writer like bullfighting in Spain, and they were also his favorite principal activities. In 1927, he wrote, “Men without Men” (1927) followed by “The Sun Also Rises” that dwelled on the lives of post- war expatriates’ and resultant raconteur of the lost generation thus establishing himself as one of the top American writers. Hemingway having been involved during WWI, had the best experiencing in expressing the views of post-war expatriates since he was one of them too thus The Sun Also Rises being more than a fiction novel. In the 1930’s, he published “Winner Take Nothing” and other forty-nine stories that were published together with “The Fifth Column” that included anthologized stories like “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” and “The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber.”

There is no doubt that Hemingway was a talented writer, During his 50th birthday, he wrote a letter to Scribner informing him how he celebrated his birthday by having sex three times, drinking with a couple of his pals, and sporting in the river by fishing. This event shows how he balanced his work from leisure like fishing where he got inspiration and peace to write his fantastic novels. The pleasures he found in his way of lives made him be much creative when it came to writing fictional books thus compelling him to romance with his minds life (Wyatt, 1999).

Major Novels

Upon Hemingway return from the WWI in Europe, he based his writing on the war experiences primarily relating the events to his wounding (Ernest Hemingway, 1996). He wrote the novel “A Farewell to Arms” in 1929, whereby he replays the whole scene where he got wounded by recreating it actually as a signal event in the novels hero Frederic Henry life. He also fictionalized himself and his new love Hardley as Henry and Catherine Barkley in the novel too. I think the book “A Farewell to Arms” is written directly from his heart since he recounted the period, which he served in the war. Many fiction writers do not go to these level of writing non-fiction works as he did thus being the book being judged as obscene by some readers due to few real scenes that he describes his sexual encounter is an overstatement. While still in hospital recovering, he commenced writing and submitting short stories to magazines and Newspapers such as the Saturday Evening Post, which was popular at that time, which enjoyed high rating and good reviews from readers and critics.

He also wrote “Soldiers Home,” which was a bit compelling story and disturbing at the same time. It related to the story of Harold Krebs who has just returned from war to his home, and he was surprised by how his family members failed to recognize the trauma that he underwent. He meticulously evokes the tension that existed between the son and the mother through carefully chosen visual detail and compressed dialogue.

In 1952, he published the novel “The Old Man and the Sea,” which talked about an old fisherman who was struggling in his bad periods in life. The positive response that he received regarding this book The Old Man and the Sea (1952) reaffirms his greatness among the American Literature (Baughman et al., 1998). The book was highly praised by critics thus winning in 1953, a Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, and a Nobel Prize for literature that placed him as the 6th American writer to receive that award. I support the critics' views since actually, it was one of the best works he had produced thus deserving the good positive reviews.

In his work “The Garden of Eden” whereby he narrates how the character Catherine had a haircut that was cropped liked a boy’s style to surprise her husband thus explaining to him that he is a girl and now a boy too (Ernest Hemingway, 1998). He further illustrates that in that night; her husband shut his eyes and felt the weight of her on him. He just lay there still and felt something, her hand held him and searched lower his body then he helped with his hands and later on laid back not thinking at all but only feeling her weight and strangeness inside (Rohy, 2011). Then Catherine said to him that now you cannot tell exactly who is and who can you. Eby calls the novel "transvestic pornography," which is entirely accurate, the narratives are a bit erotic; hence, could make an innocent reader develop erotic feelings. This narrative is the rift of gender from the usual heteronormative conventions whereby specifying who does what to who is his radical separation of genital sex and gender. Lynn perspective on the novel is that it is a pervasive deviationism of the write, which is a bit true since he seems to be troubled in his relationship thus using fictional characters to express his outlooks. In the interview, it is clear that Hemingway was obsessed with the sex change. Thus, he refuses to acknowledge that his wife is a lesbian but a boy who participates in most of his masculine activities like fishing, hunting, and shooting. Mrs. Hemingway had gained the unique status of a boy and the conventional “Mrs.” Hemingway rush to end the interview whereby he says that he has had much to avoid further questioning illustrates the situation on the very cusp of represent ability thus being obscure since he knows the conversation would put him on the public. The mock interview also demonstrates Hemingway insincerity due to his ironic refusal in ordinary signification of female masculinity and sodomy. He insists that Mrs. Hemingway is a boy, which literarily does not make sense.

Hemingway Experience During WWII

During World War II, Hemingway got the position of a respondent but did not publish any vital fiction novel about this war. However, he wrote about the WWII peripherally in mostly mediocre book “Into the Trees” and “Across the River” including other stories that were published posthumously. Nevertheless, in 1944, his actions greatly amplified his mystique. In the presence of journalists and male army soldiers, he was foolhardy and courageous. He claimed to have beaten Free French General Leclerc Philippe and to have also liberated Ritz Hotel, which was one of the famous hotels in the city. Hemingway was a great writer and a hero after the WWI incident of saving a wounded soldier, but it is tough to pin down the facts from the exaggerations at this point of beating the general and liberating the hotel.

Late Work and Political Influences

How the Castro’s Affected Him

Hemingway was a great fan of the country and even bought a property, Finca Vigia or Lookout Farm in Cuba, which he visited regularly and stayed there for longer periods with his two wives (Hardley and Mary). He bought the place and made it his home from around 1939 up to 1960. Thus, he managed to write seven books that included “Islands in the Stream,” “A Moveable Feast” and “The Old Man and The Sea ("THE OLD MAN AND THE BOAT: HEMINGWAY ON THE PILAR" 2011). After America had withdrawn its relationship with the then President Fidel Castro over his controversial Policies and Americans were advised not to visit the country, Hemingway suffered a lot since it was the only place in the world that he could find peace. Eventually, he returned to America in 1954 whereby seven years later he shot himself after the severe depression, stress, and anxiety caused by his career that not doing well at the time and personal problems in life that he was facing.

According to Reynolds, Hemingway was primarily political. During the time when the Soviets were in power, Hemingway position was a political propagandist. The Soviets saw his position of influencing a lot of writers thus used him to spread their influence among the people. He was given a codename, Argo, which refers to a sailor in Greek Methodology (Chronicling Ernest Hemingway's Relationship with The Soviets, 2017). I adore Hemingway work, but his position in the war contradicts his professional position as a writer thus disagreeing with the stance that he took. Writers are supposed to be neutral and not use their influence to sway people’s minds and decisions.

Discoveries Made After His Death

After his death, it was found out by Hotchner that In 1934, he bought a fishing boat and named it Pilar, which he used it to comfort in his dreams of chasing a huge blue marlin across the Gulf Stream. Pilar helped him broadening out in his writings especially his prose lines. Every time, he was under pressure from the critics, exhaustive live; he would use the boat to get away from the shore into the Gulf Stream and thus to free himself and to let peace be restored in him.

During an interview after his death, Hemingway confided in Hotchner who was his longtime friend that he regrets not loving his wife, Hardley, deeply since he was his true love. Despite numerous attempts by his fourth wife to stop the release of the book, it was published after her death thus the world knowing the truth (Hemingway In Love' Chronicles Papa's Romantic Regrets, 2015). True love does exist, and I believe Hemingway is happy wherever he is his love declaration for the love of his heart, Hardley.


A lot has been said in the past and is being said even today regarding the character of Ernest Hemingway. Despite being one of the most controversial and discussed writers, I believe that he was one of the greatest American Literature writers of all time let alone in America but the whole world. Other writers might exist like Mark Twain and the rest; however, from this critical analysis, it is vivid about the unique styles and influences that he derived them from like dialogues in WWI. Hemingway greatness is further shown in his awards that he received from Cuba’s highest honor of grant in July 1954, and the prestigious Nobel Prize for Literature, which ranked him as the 6th American to receive the award. Despite the awards in his writings, he managed to secure an award for bravery during the war “TENENTE ERNESTO HEMINGWAY.” Honestly, he is the greatest even despite him committing suicide due to mental illness at his Ketchum home in Idaho in 1961. His works continue to inspire everyone including me due to their unique style of writing and choice of words. All I could say is that may his soul rest in eternal peace world greatest writer.


Hemingway In Love' Chronicles Papa's Romantic Regrets. (2015). All Things Considered: Biography in Context. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

Chronicling Ernest Hemingway's Relationship with the Soviets. (2017). Weekend Edition Saturday. Biography in Context. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

Ernest Hemingway. (2013). St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture, Gale. Biography in Context. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

Ernest Hemingway. (1998). The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway: The Finca Vigia Edition.

Ernest Hemingway. (1996). Authors and Artists for Young Adults: Biography in Context. Vol. 19, Gale. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

The Old Man and the Boat: Hemingway on the Pilar. (2011). Weekend All Things Considered: Biography in Context. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

Rohy, V. (2011). Hemingway, literalism, and transgender reading. Twentieth Century Literature, vol. 57, no. 2, 2011, p. 148+. Biography in Context. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

Wyatt, D. (1999). Hemingway at Fifty.The Southern Review, vol. 35, no. 3, p. 595. Biography in Context. Retrieved on April 18, 2017 from

June 19, 2023

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