Milena Ivanovi?American Literature11 January 2018Ernest Hemingway and Virgnia Woolf: Different Faces of ModernismHemingway lived a very colorful life. He was born in Illinois and he spent his childhood vacations in Michigan hunting and fishing, which later inspired his writing. Hemingway is by far the most popular American novelist of the 20th century. His style of writing is simple which makes his novels more comprehendable that is you understand what you have read, but underneath the frst layer of letters thare are many more less understandable layers of thoughts. Virginia Woolf was an English writer born in 1882. T.
S. Elliot said that with her death pattern of culture was broken and he was completely right. Ernest Hemingway and Virginia Wolf belong to the same literary period, Modernism, however their styles are different. Modernism is a literary period from which many other movements emerged such as Impressionism, Symbolism and Expressionism. Hemingway can be considered as a repesentative of Symbolism and Virginia Woolf a repesentative of Impessionism.
Hemingway´s short story The Snows of Kilimanjaro is full of symbols. One of the first symbols is the mysterious leopard. “Close to the western summit there is the dried and frozen carcass of a leopard. No one has explained what the leopard was seeking at that altitude.
” (Hemingway, Ernest. The snows of Kilimanjaro and other stories. Simon and Schuster, 1995.) Leopard is a graceful and strong animal that symbolizes dignity. The frozen leopard on the summit of Kilimanjaro is associated with death, immortality, and possibly redemption.(Evans, Sara. Wang, Bella ed.
“Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” Summary and Analysis”. GradeSaver, 10 December 2010 Web. 10 January 2018.) One of the summits of the mountain is called “House of God” and the leopard achieved immortality through the journy to the top. The leopard´s journey and the life of Harry is in contrast.
In a way Herry wasted his life by living off of wealthy women and not writing. Another symbol is the hyena. “It came with a rush; not as a rush of water nor of wind; but of a sudden, evil-smelling emptiness and the odd thing was that the hyena slipped lightly along the edge of it.” (Hemingway, Ernest.
The snows of Kilimanjaro and other stories. Simon and Schuster, 1995.) Harry relates the hyena with death and later in the story a strange cry of hyena wakes up Helen and then she realizes that Harry is dead.
“The hyena and vultures are associated with illness, fear, and death, and Kilimanjaro itself, though its role has sparked the most controversy among scholars and critics, seems associated with a sort of redemptive heavenly afterlife.” (Evans, Sara. Wang, Bella ed.
“Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” Summary and Analysis”. GradeSaver, 10 December 2010 Web. 10 January 2018.) In a way hyena is the animal that represents Harry because through his life he decieved women. Even as he is dying “he slipped into the familiar lie he made his bread and butter by.
” (Hemingway, Ernest. The snows of Kilimanjaro and other stories. Simon and Schuster, 1995.) His wife hunts for him because he is not capable since he has gangrene but even if he didn´t I have a feeling that he would still let his wife hunt for him just like a hyena lives of scrapes of other hunters.
Another symbol are the mountains and the plains. The plains are associated with difficult episodes of Harry´s life and in contrast to that snowy mountains are associated with happiness. “Since the gangrene started in his right leg he had no pain and with the pain the horror had gone and all he felt now was a great tiredness and anger that this was the end of it.” (Hemingway, Ernest.
The snows of Kilimanjaro and other stories. Simon and Schuster, 1995.) Gangene is a physical representation of Harry´s rottening soul. Harry´s soul was slowly falling apart because he completely neglected his writing talent and just like that Harry´s leg was slowely dying.When it comes to writing style between the Helen´s and Herry´s conversations we come across Herry´s memories. The text concerning his memories is writen in italicizes stream of cousciousness which is a characteristic of Modernism. “According to Hemingway scholars, these memories are mostly autobiographical.” (Evans, Sara.
Wang, Bella ed. “Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” Summary and Analysis”. GradeSaver, 10 December 2010 Web. 10 January 2018.) Just like any other classical piece this one also left me at a stage where I am not sure of the things I read. One thing I now is that I do not like the way Hemingway is portraying women.
However in his novel “The Sun Also Rises” is in a way in contradiction with that, because the main female character acts like men do. On the other hand the men Hemingway is writing about are not really admirable. While reading Hemingway´s short stories I got a feeling that he is descrbing me in a way that we should sympathize with them and not with women. It is strange that the main mail character have thoughts in which he realises that he is treating women the wrong way, but regardless to that discovery the main characters still mistreats women. Since I already said that Harry is not admirale that leftme with the question does the woman that he is describing fits that same description or is he being unfair.”The String Quartet” by Virgina Woolf is written as a stream of consciousness which is obvious from the first paragraph. The first pragraph is a string of thoughts and it seems to me that she did not even finish her thoughts because there is no fullstop after the first paragraph instead she just strated wtiting new thoughts in a new paragraph.
Her thoughts in this short story are strong and fast-moving and very difficult to follow because the imagery is so vivid, but it is hard to find the connecton between them. Then again I think that we all feel like Virginia Woolf when we listen to music. It takes us to another world and we often catch ourself day dreaming. However the musical notes and imagery should coexist in perfect harmony, but that does not seem to bethe true in this short story. What I do not understand is why the short story is named “The String Quartet” because it seems like there is no reason to callit like this.
In the story we never find out whose concert are we listening to. There is only one mentioning of Mozart. “The String Qurtet” came from fragmented mind and from this mind we will never find out the full picture.
After reading Virginia Woolf´s biography I found out that Woolf had “five major manic episodes in her life, and during one of them she talked non-stop for three days.”(Duffy M, Warner S. T. Virginia Woolf: The String Quartet, 2011/11/03, heinkbrain.wordpress.com/2011/11/03/virginia-woolfthe-string-quartet/).
Her manic episodes are in a way very fascinating because she heard sparrows outside her window speaking Greek. She created a whole new world in her head and then she transfered it to the paper. Vrginia Woolf deffinitely produced her own distinctive narrative style.