The Old Man and the Sea
Giving high school students good, comprehensive literature is one of the most important jobs of an English curriculum. Classical literature does an excellent job of providing students with these requirements, but occasionally the text can be too complicated for high school students to comprehend. Ernest Hemingway's classic novel, The Old Man and the Sea does a great job of presenting its readers life lessons throughout the story. This, combined with a great plot that is simple to understand, makes it one of the best books ever written; therefore, The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway definitely deserves a place on all high school reading lists.
High school students are more apt to learn when studying something interesting, or something that they enjoy. Although the plot never really develops into a fully fledged novel, Hemingway did a great job of presenting the idea's of the characters. Throughout the story the reader is able to imagine the book in their mind. Scribner, Hemingway's publisher, talked about how "Ernest Hemingway took great pride in using an economy of carefully measured words and tightly wrought phrases in his writing"(Scribner). All through the story, Hemingway masterfully, placed his ideas on paper, creating a picture in the reader's mind with "his powerful, style-forming mastery of the art of narration"(p. 128 About the Author). This will help high school students understand great writing techniques and habits by giving them examples of the proper way to express themselves while writing.
Secondly, teaching students commendable values through an appealing book is a great way to get these values to stick with the pupil. Hemingway does an excellent job of doing this by showing the reader Santiago's relationship with his partner who was referred to throughout the book as the boy. Although Santiago states in the book that he is "not a religious man"(64), He does frequently pray to God, and expresses Christ-like qualities throughout the story. Respect is arguably the biggest quality he expresses in the book. On page 65 Santiago prayed, saying, "Blessed Virgin, pray for the death of this fish. Wonderful though he is.". Although he did not want to lose the battle against his adversary, he...