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Hemingway's Code Hero Essay

1254 words - 5 pages

Hemingway's Code Hero Ernest Hemingway is one of America's most prominent writers whose experiences in World War I are shared upon his many pieces of literature. A common thread that runs through Ernest Hemingway's novels is the ideal man, whose experience as a member of the "Lost Generation" is explicitly shown through his works. Hemingway's experience in World War I provided him with vast experiences that will show up in the plots of his future novels. As a member of the "Lost Generation", the people that lived during World War I, he draws experiences from his life and rewrites them in his books."The Sun Also Rises and A Farewell to Arms were"¦primarily descriptions of a society that had lost the possibility of belief. They were dominated by the atmosphere of Gothic Ruin, boredom, sterility, and decay (Aldridge 231) In the early 1900s when Europe was at war, Hemingway tried unsuccessfully to get a job with the United States Army due to an eye injury. After this set back, he applied and got a job as an ambulance driver with the Red Cross. "Wounded in both legs by a shrapnel explosion near the front lines, he fell in love with the American nurse who cared for him (Discovering Authors 2)." Hemingway spent many weeks at the hospital and was decorated for bravery by the Italian Army. This experience is given in Hemingway's most famous piece of literature, A Farewell to Arms, "the study of an American ambulance officer's disillusionment in the war and his role as a deserter. (Nobel 1) Throughout his works a few threads run throughout his many works, of these are violence, despair, and emotional unrest. "Hemingway demonstrated a proclivity for powerful yet utterly objective stories of violence, despair, and emotional unrest, concerns that dominated his fiction (Empirezine 2)." This is expertly shown in an excerpt from Compton's Encyclopedia."In "˜A Farewell to Arms, (1929) about war on the Italian front, Hemingway tells a love story that is interspersed with scenes of magnificent battle reporting. "˜To Have and Have Not (1937) shows Hemingway's interest in social problems, and interest more fully realized in "˜For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940), set in the Spanish Civil War. In Across the River and into the Trees (1950) an army officer dies while on leave. (Compton's 1)." One of the major impacts Hemingway made on the world of literature was the use of a "Code Hero", one who has all the aspects of the ideal man. As Professor Paul Totah said: "Hemingway defined the Code Hero as "a man who lives correctly, following the ideals of honor, courage., and endurance in a world that is sometimes chaotic, often stressful, and always painful." The Code hero measures himself by how well they handle the difficult situations that life throws at him. In the end the Code Hero will lose because we are all mortal, but the true measure is how a person faces death. The Code Hero is...

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