Earnest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea
At the end of the book, Santiago struggles up the hill with the mast on his shoulder, a symbolic echo of Christ carrying the cross. Read More American literature Many 'religious' images contribute to this symbolic pattern, while other patterns of symbolism center on baseball and dreams of youth. .But it like the rejected love in Browning’s The Last Ride Together, Santiago also believes,” all men strive and who succeeds?” so if human existence is to be justified in Hemingway’s ethics, it is in action , in the pursuit of the game and in the race rather than in any reward.
Read More American literature As Carlos Baker has commented, the old man moves into the gallery of literary immortals, like Wordsworth’s Leech-Gatherer whose struggle for existence is also portrayed against a vast natural backdrop, that of the British moorland. The old man has been out of the sea again and again and loves the creatures of the sea like the flying fish. They all come to life in Santiago's mind. Santiago speaks to and loves the flying fish, the dolphins, and the noble marlin. Santiago also speaks to the sharks, but he meets their malignancy with enmity. Santiago thinks of the sea as a woman, thinks of it 'as la mar, which is what people call her in Spanish when they love her,' while the younger fisherman think of the sea as the masculine 'el mar ' and consider it 'a contestant or a place or even an enemy.' The green turtles and hawk bills ‘with their elegance and sped’. Porpoises delight him. “They are good “, he says “they play and make jokes and love one another. They are our brother like the flying fish.”
It is the relentless baffle to assert his native worth and dignity that the essential tragedy of Santiago’s situation his. From the battle itself he gains nothing except the sense of having taught it to the limits of his strength, of having shown what a man can do when it is necessary. Like most tragic heroes, Santiago remains undefeated only because he has gone on trying. Confronted with disaster and mercy broken physically, he remains spiritually undefeated and rises to the status of a Christ like figure. Age, isolation, exhaustion and various other obstacles have been overcome by him and he has exemplified the nobility of the human spirit. Read More American literature Even in physical defect. Another tragic trait in Santiago’s character lies in his love of excess. He sails beyond his limits and acknowledges this himself when he tells the skeleton of the marlin, “fish that you were. I went too far out. I ruined us both.”