Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Hemingway is a Downer

I was introduced to Ernest Hemingway's short stories in an undergrad creative writing course. If you take any contemporary writing or literature class, Hemingway is inescapable. I was instantly drawn to the elemental story telling, how you could express so much about a character or event with such simple sentences. When I transitioned into his novels, I basically stopped with the first text I read. It was A Farewell to Arms, which had the Hemingway style I connected with, but the content--particularly the ending--was so bleak and depressing that I haven't read anything by him since.

Is it possible to separate style from content? If you love one, but hate the other, can you ever appreciate the work as whole?

Images from The Hemingway Museum

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