Ernest Hemingway was one of the greatest authors of the twentieth century. His simple style, lucid depictions, and relatable narratives propelled him into a world of literary fame. These unique attributes are inimitable; Hemingway relates to the reader on a deeper level that even the best imitators cannot achieve. For this and many other reasons, critics praise Hemingway for the indefinable work of an exceptional writer. One of his most well-known novels, A Farewell to Arms, is notorious for its depth into the reality and adversity of war. Hemingway’s personal experiences during World War I are evident in this renowned novel. He uses these tragic familiarities to penetrate the reader’s mind with the grievous effects of war and loss. Hemingway uses vivid word choices, simple sentence structure and coherent dialogue, as well as life experiences, to create universal novels, encompassed in epic love stories filled with symbols and themes hidden within his prose, that illustrate the tragic nature of life during the war. In his acclaimed novel, A Farewell to Arms, Hemingway depicts the story of a soldier in World War I, a vicarious parallel to his own experiences, struggling to find meaning in a world of ruin.
Ernest Miller Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899 in Oak Park, Illinois. One of six siblings, he had four sisters–Ursula, Madelaine, Carol, and Marcelline–and one younger brother, Leicester. His mother, Grace Hall-Hemingway, was an active religious woman and a musician. Hemingway was his mother’s favorite. Grace frequently dressed young Hemingway in girls’ clothing, but Hemingway became annoyed with his mother’s intrusive and controlling nature as he grew older. Hemingway’s father, Clarence Edmonds Hemingway, was a physician who loved literature and the outdoors. As a young boy, Hemingway followed in his father’s footsteps. Clarence taught Hemingway all about the outdoors. For many summer months during his childhood, Hemingway spent on the shores of Walloon Lake in Michigan, where he explored the outdoors and learned much about himself.
In high school, Hemingway proved himself as an outstanding athlete and scholar. He wrote for both his school newspaper and yearbook. After graduating from high school in 1917, Hemingway decided not to attend college. Instead, he began working for the Kansas City Star newspaper as a cub reporter. Although his time at the Star was short, the rules and guidelines for the newspaper stories had a long-lasting effect on Hemingway’s writing style. He learned to write with short sentences, short first paragraphs, and dynamic language, a style that would define his writing career.
Hemingway is praised for his use of prose in many of his novels, particularly, A Farewell to Arms. Hemingway’s word choice is simple, yet incredibly descriptive, as in the opening paragraph of A Farewell to Arms:
In the late summer of that year we lived in a house in a village that looked across the river and the plain to the...