Hemingway's Use of Foreshadowing, Pathos, Imagery, and Personification

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Hemingway presents takes the several literary styles to present this short story. Hemingway’s use of Foreshadowing, Pathos, Imagery and Personification allows the reader to enter the true context of the frustration and struggle that the couples face. Although written in the 1920’s it the presents a modern day conflict of communication that millions of couples face. At first glance the beautiful landscape of the Barcelonian hillside in which Jig refers to frequently throughout the text appears to have taken the form of White Elephants. The Americans’ response to Jigs’ observation was less than enthusiastic as he provides a brief comment and continues on with his cerveza. This was but the first of the many verbal jousts to come between Jig and the American. The metaphorical inferences in those verbal confrontations slowly uncover the couple’s dilemma and why they may be on the waiting for the train to Madrid.

There are a few characters within this short story. Jig is the protagonist and the antagonist is the American. The waitress is supporting the story with quick cameos as she delivers cervezas to the couple. Although these characters were not described in great detail they leave a strong image of a struggling young couple in your mind. Hemingway describing the couple as the American and Jig was purposeful in that it allows for the readers mind to place anyone into that scenario. However, the landscape was described in greater detail to acclimate the reader to the metaphorical inferences and similes that would be exchanged between the American and Jig. The first inference “they look like white elephants” was made by Jig as she describes the hillside past the valley as White Elephants. White could symbolize p...

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...e in part, he waited 25 years to turn in a pack of cigarettes but he kept the picture that he had hidden from wife. The Viet Cong’s soldier had this stunning realization” I understand all at once that there is a secret space in the word, not Salem but sa and lem, Vietnamese words, the one meaning to fall and the other to blur, and this is the moment that comes to all of us and this is the moment” that would give him closure to what he had done to an American soldier separated from his Regiment some 25 earlier. Salem offers many images that persist long after the reader has read the last word. The author broke the mold by telling the story from the prospective of an American combatant rather than the American hero. This direction of storytelling was a risky, but the effective narration and visual cues that are taken from this story are stunning and long lasting.

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