Feminist Perspective In Ernest Hemingway's Hills Like Whit Elephants

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Feminist Perspective - “Hills Like Whit Elephants” Toni Gelo South University In Ernest Hemingway’s The Hills Like White Elephants, Hemingway touches on the racy subject of abortion through his method of writing called the Iceberg Theory. Hemingway writes a surface story, omitting superfluous and irrelevant matter (The Iceberg Theory, 2012). The story takes place in a train station in Ebro River Valley in Spain. As it begins we are introduced to the barren landscape that surrounds the train station across the valley from the white hills of Ebro which we find is symbolic to the pregnancy and the decision that stands between the two characters. Hemingway brings to the surface the struggle of power between man and woman and the stereotypes…show more content…
She is constantly looking for reassurance from the American that if she goes through with the procedure he will still see her in the same light and love her all the same. “That’s the only thing that bothers us. It’s the only thing that’s made us unhappy.” The girl looked at the bead curtain, put her hand out and took hold of two of the strings of beads. “And you think then we’ll be all right and be happy.” “I know we will. You don’t have to be afraid. I’ve known lots of people that have done it.” “So have I,” said the girl. “And afterward they were all so happy” (Hemingway, 2011, para. 50). Jig seems to make herself believe what he is saying because she does not want to disappoint the American by telling him how she really feels about the procedure. It is easier for her to conform to his likings and be obedient. She lives up to the stereotype that woman should be obedient and listen to what a man says. The American takes advantage of Jig’s confusion by insisting that it is an “awfully simple operation” (Hemingway, 2011, para. 40). Because of her passion to please him, she loses who she is inside. She is more worried about being loved and accepted by a man that she will give up what she wants. By the end of the story she does not know what she feels or what is…show more content…
“What do you mean?” “I don’t care about me.” “Well I care about you,” “Oh yes. But I don’t care about me. And I’ll do it and then everything will be fine.” “I don’t want you to do it if you feel that way” (Hemingway, 2011, para. 65). Jig puts down her emotions and tries not to look like she cares too much. It is easier for her to shut out her own emotions and do as The American wants. She will give up her dreams and a life to make him happy. Hemingway also portrays Jig as a peacemaker who lacks the willpower to make her own decision. “They’re lovely hills,” she said. “They don’t really look like white elephants. I just meant the coloring of their skin through the trees.” “Should we have another drink?” “All right” (Hemingway, 2011, para. 35). Jig tries her hardest to defer his attention from the situation at hard, but all attempts were a

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