Themes In Hills Like White Elephants, By Ernest Hemingway

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“Love is an endless mystery, for it has nothing else to explain it” a quote by Rabindranath Tagore, summarizes the themes implemented in “Hills like White Elephants” by Ernest Hemingway, and “What we Talk About When we Talk About Love” by Raymond Carver. These two stories, contain a husband and wife who attempt to decipher the meaning of love. Hemingway’s characters do this subliminally, whereas Carver’s character’s discuss the meaning in a much broader fashion. Both authors have similar writing strategies, but have a few differing literary techniques. These two aforementioned stories, use similar structures and setting, but contrast in their use of symbols, to convey the author’s negative attitudes of love through their themes. First of all, Hemingway utilizes dialogue as his main structure alongside few descriptions of the setting, to emphasize his negative outlook on love. His theme is that of, people should not talk, but rather communicate in order to love one another. This theme is applied through, what is …show more content…
Carver attracts the readers to the Hills appearing like white elephants. A white elephant, by definition, is a possession that is useless or troublesome. In the American man’s eyes the child is the white elephant. He is unable to love or communicate with Jig because of this factor. The man states “That 's the only thing that bothers us. It 's the only thing that 's made us unhappy”(277). He see’s this child as a burden, and that she needs to get the “simple operation”(277), or abortion, so they can return to how they were before. Their lack of communication hinders their relationship, because the man is telling her what he needs in order for them to be happy. Their relationship is very demanding on the man’s side. He cannot handle the child, thus they are only talking, rather than communicating and understanding one

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