Monday, September 2, 2019
The Old Man and the Sea Essay -- essays research papers
In The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway describes an old fisherman and the unfortunate trials he faces as his "luck" runs out. Through the novel, the fisherman, Santiago, replicates Hemingway's ideal man, a noble hero. Hemingway had a Code of Behavior that he himself followed. He had morals that were strict and an appreciation for instinct and human nature. He had a specific way of living life and an understanding of time. He believed in taking risks and acting upon instinct. He believed that a person who followed his Code of Behavior was a noble hero. In Hemingway's Code of Behavior, a noble hero is a master craftsman. This means that he is not dependent on other people or on technology. It also means that he is a master at his art and he keeps practicing it in order to better himself. The second characteristic of a noble hero is that he struggles in order to remain undefeated. This means that he does anything possible to reach his goal. He struggles and suffers in order to perfect his art and therefore, himself, "No matter what kind of suffering and trial he has to go Kapadia 2 through he has to fulfill his destinyÃ¢â¬ ¦"(Harada 270). The third characteristic of Hemingway's noble hero is that he accepts defeat. Once he is defeated, once he can better himself no more, he should stop trying because, "He lives in time. And the goal of time is death and destruction"(Harada 276). He should accept that he is no longer useful and that he has been defeated. These three characteristics define Hemingway's ideal man. In The Old Man and the Sea, Santiago exemplifies Hemingway's Code of Behavior for a noble hero. In the novel, Santiago is a master craftsman. He is only dependent on himself. While the other fishermen use motor boats, Santiago uses his skiff. While the other men have many workers and helpers who hold several lines, Santiago has three lines all operated by his own hand. He is an expert, "Ã¢â¬ ¦the old man goes much farther out than the other fishermen and casts bait in much deeper water"(Gurko 66). Because he knows the waters and the movements of the fish, he has a better chance of catching the fish. Although he is taking a greater risk by going out deeper, he has a better chance of catching the bigger fish. Another thing that makes Santiago a master craftsman is his experience. He has bee... ... craft to the task Kapadia 5 of playing the fish well"(Rovit 86). He knows tricks and occupies himself with bettering his ability to fish. He struggles and suffers in order to stay undefeated. He beats all odds and fights all battles with the thought that he can and will win. And so he does. He goes far out and acts on what he thinks is right. He does not fear his actions nor does he regret them. He fights every battle as if it is his last and therefore comes out on top. Third, he accepts defeat. This is the most honorable characteristic. No matter how hard he has fought, once it is over, he does not look back wishing he could have acted differently. He accepts his mistakes and recognizes that, "He has overstepped the boundary of man's finite and limited nature"(Harada 275). He went out too far and this is what he gets. In these ways he is much like Hemingway, a noble hero. His actions and the consequences of them are easily notable and should not be look down upon. In the long run, Santiago answered his calling, fought his battles, and when he was finally defeated by his own pride, he recognized it and accepted it. This makes Santiago a noble hero.