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Hills Like White Elephants

Hills Like White Elephants research papers on Ernest Hemingway's masterpiece. Hemingway’s short story gives readers a glimpse into several moments in the lives of two characters. In their simple interchanges and actions, a world of miscommunication, hurt and loss is revealed. The characters in Hills Like White Elephants are introduced in term papers as an American and a girl—no names are put to the characters. This creates an immediate impersonality between the two and between them and the reader. When the man calls her “Jig” for the first time, it is not like a name but just a little jab of a word, as if she is no more complex than that.

Hills Like White Elephants

The vacuous conversation between the two people indicates that their relationship is not rich and caring, but that it just takes lackluster stabs at connecting. The simplicity of her thought process indicates a woman who is very detached from her feelings and her situation: “I wanted to try this new drink. That’s all we do, isn’t it—look at things and try new drinks.” It is her summation of their relationship in the very moments when they are also waiting for a train to take her to Madrid for an abortion. Her use of words also controls the situation when, for example, she says, “And afterward they were all so happy.” His response is not to her words but to what remains unsaid: “Well,” the man said, “if you don’t want to you don’t have to [have the abortion].”

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