Hills Like White Elephants Symbolism Essay

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Hills like White Elephants is the story of a man and woman who have come across a conflicted interest in their relationship. Jig, the woman, wishes to settle down and start a family, while the man only wants a bed partner and nothing more. To completely comprehend the contested characters relationship and the ending presented in the short story Hills like White Elephants, an individual must analyze the multitude of symbols portrayed in this story. Jig, the name that the man calls the woman that is assumed to be her name, is a symbol of its own. A jig by definition is a little dance or a tool designed for one repetitive purpose only. Symbolizing that she only serves on purpose to the man, as entertainment or a bed partner, her name helps to show an individual his idea about the situation. Representing fertile and infertile landscapes are the two sides of the train tracks. One side has “fields of grain and trees along the banks of Ebro” and a distance off there is a river (Hemmingway 565). According to Renner, this represents the fertile landscape, and her longing for something more. The other side of the train track has “hills across the valley of Ebro” that are “long and white” (Hemmingway 563). The man’s want for nothing more is represented by this infertile landscape (Renner). Looking at the hills, Jig thought that “they look like…show more content…
Jig, as hinted by her dialogue, wants to keep the baby and is denying to have the procedure for an abortion done. However, the man wants only a bed partner with ‘no strings attached.’ By holding the two strings of beads, Jig symbolizes her want to keep ‘strings attached.’ She yearns for both him and the baby. However, her plea seems unreasonable to him and this is portrayed when he surveys the other people waiting for the train, “they were all waiting reasonably for the train” (Hemmingway

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