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Hills Like White Elephants Essay

1421 words - 6 pages

Gema PerezMs. LovettAP LiteratureRelationships Parallel to Gender Roles in Hills Like White ElephantsOf all the issues roiling on the ongoing culture in the 1920's abortion was both the most intimate and the most common one. Almost half of every American women terminated at least one pregnancy, in which those women have been testimony for abortion as a crime. In America abortion was illegal but possible; abortion has been legal since 1973 but before then abortion was a very common yet dangerous procedure. During the 1920's women often times turned to dangerous, illegal methods to terminate their pregnancy. Today abortion is common and safe procedure, and although it was common during the 1920's it was not always safe. The national debate over abortion usually centers on the legal and political controversies. On the other hand, it is in the human heart where the greatest conflicts over abortion arise both within itself and in its relationship with others. The empowerment and the continual push for equal status for women has become widely popular and successful. Women have stepped out of traditional roles of being a housewife, a mother to more assertive natures. Many controversial issues surround women's crusade of freedoms including the widely debated right to choose what she does to her body, referring to an abortion. In 1927 Ernest Hemingway wrote a short story titled, Hills Like White Elephants that expressed a feminist movement focusing around this issue. Through the character's development and ability to come to her own decision despite her boyfriend's constant pressure suggests a powerful feminist theme in a society dominated by men. (Azhar, Samina) Jig and the American's relationship in Hills Like White elephants is depicted as unstable. Hemingway characterizes the American as a coward yet condescending and Jig as reproachful yet guileful by symbolizing alcohol as a distraction to convey that drinking is the answer to ones escape of reality and by euphemizing the baby as a bother to their relationship.Jig is reproachful towards the American about keeping her baby. The story starts off with the girl and her partner at a bar sitting just outside at a train station somewhere between Barcelona and Madrid instead of waiting patiently for their train at its original spot. This indicates that they are in need for a refresher; the couple could have had any beverage to drink but the man suggested that they should drink beer. The American emphasized "big" ones when he ordered them; the American's emphasis on the size of the beer gives the reader a hint that the couple is dealing with something serious. This leads the reader to believe that the alcohol consumption is a panacea for the couple's distress. As the American and the girl enjoy their drinks, they engage into a small talk where there appears to be a spark in their conversation when the girl informs the American that her drink "tastes like liquorice." The American responds, "That's the way...

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