Hills Like White Elephants Literary Analysis

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Ernest Hemmingway, a renowned author from the 20th century, verbalized “all things truly wicked start from innocence.” This quote can be applied to the short story, “Hills Like White Elephants”, in the sense that the underlying topic between the main characters is a baby. The unborn child would represent innocence, and the struggle of whether or not to keep the child can be seen as something wicked. The short story is full of literary elements that help to form a plot that is both intriguing and disconcerting. Three literary elements that are most prominent in this story are mood, symbolism through imagery, and the narrator’s point of view. The mood expressed in “Hills Like White Elephants” is restrictive. The main characters are uneasy and…show more content…
He subtly bounces around thesubject of abortion, just as Jig and the American do. His technique mimics that of a storyteller, but lacks the tell-all factor that comes along with story telling. The narrator’s descriptions leave room for interpretation and tend to simplify things that the reader would normally fixate on such and the change in language. There is very subtle interpretation provided by the narrator when “The woman came out through the curtains with two glasses of beer and put them down on the damp felt pads. "The train comes in five minutes," she said. "What did she say?" asked the girl. "That the train is coming in five minutes." (102-104) The narrator translated what the server said to serve as an example that he is there to ease and guide the reader. The narrator also uses past tense, which once again indicates the storyteller technique being employed. A wandering ear that is objective and explains the situation in such a way that the individual reader can interpret it, while also provide a clear conflict throughout the plot. The short story contains a plethora of literary elements, which are utilized to aid in the formation of a plot that is both alluring and
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