Hills Like White Elephants, by Ernest Hemingway Essay

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In “Hills like White Elephants”, the setting of the story is symbolic to the main character’s dilemma. The author, Ernest Hemingway gives just enough information by using symbols in the story so the reader can draw a deeper meaning to what is being detailed. As the main theme of the story, he relies on symbolism to convey the idea of an abortion. The description of the two different landscapes of the railroad tracks represents Jig’s difficult decision of whether she should keep her baby or continue a ruthless lifestyle with the American.
Ernest Hemingway uses the title “Hills like White Elephants” to symbolize Jig’s pregnancy. A “white elephant” is a defined as something that is of a great burden or a possession unwanted by the owner but
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The main scenery that surrounds the station, which is the two separate sides of the railroad tracks, plays a primary role in the conflict of the story. Both sides represent the positives and negatives of the abortion. There is one side that is very infertile, similar to the loneliness and barrenness of a desert yet the other side there are fields of grass, mountains, hills, trees, and a river. (Rankin 2).
“Were fields of grain and trees along the banks of the Ebro River” (Hemingway 2). This is the positive side, full of life, beautiful and pleasing to the eye. Hemingway uses fields of grain and trees to represent fertility and fruitfulness, which also symbolize Jig’s pregnancy, the life in her womb. The lively side also represents the new blossoming life the woman could have if she opposes to the abortion and decides to have the baby. As soon as Jig appreciated the view, which is the connection of her unborn child, the symbol of a “shadow of a cloud”, that represents the American’s selfishness and the abortion of the fetus, which overcomes her happiness (Hemingway 2). The arid side of the station represents dissipation, death, guilt and represents her body after the abortion; it’s full of emptiness (Rankin 2). The man tells Jig “it’s really an awfully simple operation, Jig, it’s not really an operation at all” (Hemingway 2). The Jig is extremely

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