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Hemingway, Ernest. (1899 - 1961).

L i f e

- a journalist and correspondent reporter: covered war conflicts, crime cases, etc.

- spent some time in Paris: experienced a liberal moral climate, and met the modernists, including Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein, Sherwood Anderson, or Francis Scott Fitzgerald

- promoted a ‘masculine’ way of life both in his living and writing

W o r k

< E. Pound, G. Stein, and S. Anderson

- content: the violence of the modern world as ritualised in hunting, fishing, and bullfighting; and its consequences in physical wounds, psychic suffering, and the question of how to live with pain

- form: adapted journalistic techniques to fiction in his impersonal and telegraphic style, emphasis on direct description and dialogue, and avoidance of narrator commentary or interpretation

- "grace under pressure": restrained but vigorous language, deceptively simple and spare, but communicating a great deal in between the lines

- his style best manifested in his short stories, considered a greater achievement than his novels

 - no other major American writer achieved such popular success, international celebrity, and world-wide reputation

The Sun Also Rises (US) = Fiesta (GB) (1926):

- a group of heavy-drinking, tough-talking, and hard-living expatriates

- Jake Barnes: the narrator, an American reporter in Paris, sexually impotent as a result of a war wound x Robert Cohn, his romantically strained friend x Lady Brett Ashley, the sexually liberated femme fatale, both admired and feared

- expresses the post-war mood of the lost generation, and uses the Gertrude Stein’s phrase as an epigraph

=> to learn how to live life can sometimes help us to understand it

A Farewell to Arms (1929):

- an American ambulance officer Henry suffers a wound in Italy, falls in love with a British nurse Catherine, and deserts with her

- finds a ‘separate peace’ in Switzerland to have it shattered as both Catherine and his child die at childbirth

Death in the Afternoon (1932):

- a now classic novel about bullfighting

=> his life philosophy: fascination with danger and death, and commitment to honour and valour

The Green Hills of Africa (1935):

- his own experience of African safaris

- a blend of travel description, a big-game hunting, and literary commentary

The Fifth Column (1938):

- a play about his own journalistic experience of the Spanish Civil War

For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940):

- his most political novel about his own journalistic experience of the Spanish Civil War

- the title: from John Donne

- an American academic heroically sacrifices his life in what proves to be a lost cause (against General Franco, for peasants)

The Old Man and the Sea (1952):

-  originally planned as a section of the novel Islands in the Stream (1970, posthumously)

- a parable-like tale of an old Cuban fisherman succeeding in catching a giant marlin x but: failing to keep the sharks from eating it 

- won him the Pulitzer Prize, led to the Nobel Prize (1954)

A Moveable Feast (1964, posthumously):

- reminiscences drawing on his notes and journalistic writings


(Photo: Wikimedia Commons).

  • Author

    Ernest (Miller) Hemingway. (1899 - 1961). American.
  • Work

    Novelist. Short story writer. Journalist. Nobel Prize Winner (1954). Author of The Sun Also Rises (1926).
  • Genre

    Modern fiction. Lost Generation.


Baym, Nina, ed. The Norton Anthology of American Literature. New York: W. W. Norton, 1995.

Bercovitch, Sacvan, ed. The Cambridge History of American  Literature. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995.

Cunliffe, Marcus. The Literature of the United States. London: Penguin, 1991.

Lauter, Paul, ed. The Heath Anthology of American Literature. Lexington: D. C. Heath, 1994.

McQuade, Donald, gen.ed. The Harper American Literature. New York: Harper & Collins, 1996.

Ruland, Richard, Malcolm Bradbury. Od  puritanismu k postmodernismu. Praha: Mladá fronta, 1997.

Vančura, Zdeněk, ed. Slovník spisovatelů: Spojené státy americké. Praha: Odeon, 1979.

His Short Stories

Short story collections:

In Our Time (1925)

Men Without Women (1927)

Winner Take Nothing (1933)

Individual short stories:

"In Another Country" (1927)

"The Snows of Kilimanjaro" (1936)

"The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber" (1936)

"Fifty Grand" (1937)


"If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast".

Epigraph of A Moveable Feast (1964).


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