Female Oppression In Ernest Hemingway's Hills Like White Elephants

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offense than smiling). Women are naturally less vindictive than men, and do not require people as possessions to bolster their identities. This poem is from a modern perspective, and reflects the empowerment that women have created for themselves in the last century. One of the ways which female oppression became so widespread and successful was the acquiescence of the majority of women. Women were beaten, killed, imprisoned, and ostracized for standing up to oppression. However, the more that women refused to be made into objects and mistreated the less men were able to do so with impunity. Spera’s poem is rich with bitter disgust of how careless men remain today. Even though women are much more self-sufficient, have representation in…show more content…
Hills Like White Elephants is an inside perspective of an afternoon conversation between young lovers who have just had their romance bubble popped with the revelation that the female is pregnant. The story begins with a light and relaxing mood as Hemingway sets the scene in a beautiful Spanish valley with a vista of long white hills. As the couple settles down for cool beers on a warm day they quickly touch the hot spot of resentment lingering just under the surface of their cool day. Now that the freedom of their frivolous affair has been chained down by the reality of a child, what once was a simple pleasure now holds no taste; “I wanted to try this new drink. That’s all we do, isn’t it-look at things and try new drinks?” (Hemingway 78). Although Hemingway never says as much, it is somehow inferred that the young American male is spoiled. Hemingway has the amazing skill of saying much between the lines, and in this short story that is where the substance…show more content…
For those few men who could handle an empowered women, there are not that many to choose from. This is a problem that is decreasing with time, as more empowered women raise empowered girls and boys who are taught to respect them. However, for Jig in Hills Like White Elephants she has lost her delusional innocence that made her so loveable. She knows that no matter what happens life will never be the same for her; “’No, we can’t. It isn’t ours any more.’ ‘It’s ours.’ ‘No, it isn’t. And once they take it away, you never get it back’” (Hemingway 79). Although the man thinks she’s referring to the baby, Jig is talking about her innocence. The cost of love is much higher for a women than it is for a man. John Updike’s short story A&P begins with strong female objectification by the protagonist, a young male shop clerk. He is distracted while ‘checking out’ a customer by ‘checking out’ a young customer. Updike shares the youth’s inner monologue of assessing the costumer 's specks, and then the cold cruelty as he assesses the ‘witch’ who stands before him demanding he do his job. The clerk then refers to the women as
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