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Cat In The Rain And Hills Like White Elephants

1020 words - 5 pages

Ernest Hemingway has a talent for writing stories that captivate and test his readers’ imagination. He is famously known for writing in, what he calls, the Iceberg Technique. In other words, Hemingway was a simplistic author giving his readers only the “tip of the iceberg”, and leaving their minds to create meaning behind specific words while he just guides us with his stories dialogue, simple imagery, and symbols. In order to fully understand his stories, readers must piece the symbols and dialogue together to create the bigger picture! This was a common theme found in “Cat in the Rain” and “Hills Like White Elephants.”
In the short story, “Cat in the Rain”, Ernest Hemingway sets the ...view middle of the document...

The entire story is based on the conversation between the man and women. So what sounds like a young couple is just waiting for their train, enjoying the scenery, and drinking some beer is really a short story that relies on symbolism to execute the theme of choosing to live selfishly and deal with the guilt, or choosing a more difficult yet selfless path of life. Furthermore, similar to “Cat in the Rain”, the sense of romance between this couple seems to be deteriorating as well; especially when the female says “…that’s all we do, isn’t it – look at things and try new drinks?” In this scene she seems bored of the relationship she shares with her significant other.
Hemingway uses symbols throughout both of the short stories to give his readers clues about the message he is trying to relay without actually saying the message. For example, The cat in “Cat in the Rain” is a symbol of compassion and affection: emotions that the woman is longing for from her own husband. “I want to have a kitty to sit on my lap and purr when I stroke her” this quote said by the American wife reveals how she wants to show love and compassion and receive the same back. Also, the wife’s eagerness to save cat from the rain can be seen as a symbol of her determination to save her marriage. The wife is willing to go through the heavy rain storm to save the cat, which represents affection and compassion, and can be associated with her need to save her marriage with her husband. The rain was also used as a tool in Hemingway’s symbolism to confine the American couple to their room, thereby allowing the author to illustrate the interaction between the husband and wife and further demonstrating their deteriorating marriage. Another symbol of confinement is when Hemingway describes the female in the story as “the American wife” this displays how she is...

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