Who is the personality of this writer for us, which causes a rather contradictory attitude to himself? In the early twentieth century, he was for the soldiers “the father of Hemingway,” and who is he for humanity at the beginning of the twenty-first century? A man of extraordinary abilities, which attracts attention not only with works but also with life. The catastrophic time of the First World War, revolutions, coups left signs of catastrophic life on Hemingway’s life. Staying on the side of the Italian army, a military correspondent, a boxer, a bullfighter – does not it seem like a banal experimentation? Of course not. The desire to be all the time at the limit beyond which, death, can be explained by the desire to create a real one hundred percent world in his works, so that he enters the reader’s consciousness and remains as an inseparable link of his own experiences.
His works are imbued with a motive of pessimism, extreme inadequacy; the hero is in an atmosphere of suffering, an inner emptiness that hides under external cynicism, indifference. The blood and suffering of the First World War gave birth to people without feelings, people who watched friends, relatives, people who were courted by girls, sisters of mercy, and perceived them not as men, but as a set of wounds, dirt and disappointment. The theme of the “lost generation” acquired the leading significance in the works of Hemingway. Its representatives amaze with cold cynicism, but in reality it is the inability to establish a life that has lost all values, even faith.
This is how Frederic Henry appears in the work “Farewell to Arms”. At first glance, he may be interested only in booze, prostitutes and war, but this she made him put on a mask of indifference in front of his face, singing this man with poisonous breath. And only a painful feeling for Katherine is an open wound, only it gives him the opportunity to realize himself as a person, and not as an instrument in someone’s hands in this war for the sake of money, and not for the sake of nobility and romance.
Jake Barne, a man who went through the war and experienced injuries... not so much physical as the spiritual, can no longer return to a normal world view. He wants to live, he loves life, but his life is fragments, a weak attempt to understand how to live, find some niche, armor, through which one could not penetrate into his heart. He loves Brett, who, too, during the war, suffered no less than a trauma to the soul, this is evidenced only by how they met. I think it’s perversions, it’s not normal when a man and a woman begin to love each other in war, in a hospital, when it’s all pain and suffering, the feeling also turns into pain and suffering, which you want to calm down all the time. Bret can not be true, Jake does not have the strength and desire even to be outraged – this is helplessness, this inability to live in normal conditions.
It is difficult for a person to resist before fate, before a life that, like an element, seethes, throws people anywhere, and it only seems to us that our destiny is in our hands.
The elder Santiago in the story “The Old Man and the Sea” is a man alone with the elements, with the sea-life. He is the personification of faith, which can be a council in the elements, which is a beacon on which one must navigate the sea. The skeleton of that fish, which remained after his return, was the skeleton of his belief in himself, that he surpassed himself, carried out the impossible. It’s not about the impotence of a person, and about its fabulous insurmountability, but about the fact that faith is the meaning of everything and that it will not allow to become a wood in the stormy waves of life.
Consequently, Hemingway’s works are full of tragedy, which overflows the writer’s world. The atmosphere of despair and helplessness affects consciousness. But I think Hemingway is not a guide to pessimism, but a person who perfectly reflects reality, very successfully conveying the atmosphere, moods, experiences. And in real life, one should never lose hope, faith. Maybe you need to see in his works for tragic figures and events a hint of the future, for eternity, fortunately?