The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway

The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway

by Ernest Hemingway

Hardcover(Classic Edition)

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Overview

Before he gained wide fame as a novelist, Ernest Hemingway established his literary reputation with his short stories. This collection, The Short Stories, originally published in 1938, is definitive. Among these forty-nine short stories are Hemingway's earliest efforts, written when he was a young foreign correspondent in Paris, and such masterpieces as "Hills Like White Elephants," "The Killers," "The Short, Happy Life of Francis Macomber," and "The Snows of Kilimanjaro." Set in the varied landscapes of Spain, Africa, and the American Midwest, this collection traces the development and maturation of Hemingway's distinct and revolutionary storytelling style — from the plain, bald language of his first story, "Up in Michigan," to the seamless prose and spare, eloquent pathos of "A Clean, Well-Lighted Place" to the expansive solitude of the Big Two-Hearted River stories. These stories showcase the singular talent of a master, the most important American writer of the twentieth century.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780684837864
Publisher: Scribner
Publication date: 04/28/1997
Series: Scribner Classics Series
Edition description: Classic Edition
Pages: 464
Sales rank: 603,032
Product dimensions: 6.12(w) x 9.25(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Ernest Hemingway did more to influence the style of English prose than any other writer of his time. Publication of The Sun Also Rises and A Farewell to Arms immediately established him as one of the greatest literary lights of the 20th century. His classic novella The Old Man and the Sea won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953. Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. He died in 1961.

Date of Birth:

July 21, 1899

Date of Death:

July 2, 1961

Place of Birth:

Oak Park, Illinois

Place of Death:

Ketchum, Idaho

Read an Excerpt

Preface

The first four stories are the last ones I have written. The others follow in the order in which they were originally published.

The first one I wrote was Up in Michigan, written in Paris in 1921. The last was Old Man at the Bridge cabled from Barcelona in April of 1938.

Beside The Fifth Column, I wrote The Killers, Today Is Friday, Ten Indians, part of The Sun Also Rises and the first third of To Have and Have Not in Madrid. It was always a good place for working. So was Paris, and so were Key West, Florida, in the cool months; the ranch, near Cooke City, Montana; Kansas City; Chicago; Toronto, and Havana, Cuba.

Some other places were not so good but maybe we were not so good when we were in them.

There are many kinds of stories in this book. I hope that you will find some that you like. Reading them over, the ones I liked the best, outside of those that have achieved some notoriety so that school teachers include them in story collections that their pupils have to buy in story courses, and you are always faintly embarrassed to read them and wonder whether you really wrote them or did you maybe hear them somewhere, are The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber, In Another Country, Hills Like White Elephants, A Way You'll Never Be, The Snows of Kilimanjaro, A Clean Well-Lighted Place, and a story called The Light of the World which nobody else ever liked. There are some others too. Because if you did not like them you would not publish them.

In going where you have to go, and doing what you have to do, and seeing what you have to see, you dull and blunt the instrument you write with. But I would rather have it bent and dull and know I had to put it on the grindstone again and hammer it into shape and put a whetstone to it, and know that I had something to write about, than to have it bright and shining and nothing to say, or smooth and well-oiled in the closet, but unused.

Now it is necessary to get to the grindstone again. I would like to live long enough to write three more novels and twenty-five more stories. I know some pretty good ones.


Ernest Hemingway

1938

"The Battler"; "Big Two-Hearted River: Part I"; "Big Two-Hearted River: Part II"; "Cat in the Rain"; "Cross-Country Snow"; "The Doctor and the Doctor's Wife"; "The End of Something"; "Indian Camp"; "Mr. and Mrs. Elliot"; "My Old Man"; "Out of Season";
"The Revolutionist"; "Soldier's Home"; "The Three-Day Blow";
"A Very Short Story"; copyright © 1925 Charles Scribner's Sons;
renewal copyright © 1953 Ernest Hemingway

"Banal Story"; "A Canary for One"; "Hills Like White Elephants"; "In Another Country"; "The Killers"; "Now I Lay Me"; "A Pursuit Race"; "A Simple Enquiry"; "Ten Indians"; "Today Is Friday"; "The Undefeated"; copyright © 1927 Charles Scribner's Sons; renewal copyright © 1955 Ernest Hemingway

"The Alpine Idyll" copyright © 1927 The Macaulay Company;
renewal copyright © 1955 Ernest Hemingway

"Che Ti Dice Patria?" and "Fifty Grand' copyright © 1927 Ernest Hemingway; renewal copyright © 1955

"On the Quai at Smyrna" and "Wine of Wyoming" copyright © 1930 Charles Scribner's Sons; renewal copyright © 1958 Ernest Hemingway

"A Natural History of the Dead" copyright © 1932, 1933 Charles Scribner's Sons; renewal copyright © 1960 Ernest Hemingway; © 1961 Mary Hemingway

"After the Storm" copyright © 1932 Ernest Hemingway; renewal copyright © 1960

"A Clean, Well-Lighted Place"; "A Day's Wait"; "Fathers and Sons"; "The Gambler, the Nun, and the Radio"; "Homage to Switzerland"; "The Light of the World"; "The Mother of a Queen"; "One Reader Writes"; "The Sea Change"; "A Way You'll Never Be" copyright © 1933 Charles Scribner's Sons;
renewal copyright © 1961 Mary Hemingway

"God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen" copyright © 1933 Ernest Hemingway; renewal copyright © 1961 Mary Hemingway

"The Capital of the World"; "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber"; "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" copyright © 1936 Ernest Hemingway;
renewal copyright © 1964 Mary Hemingway

"Old Man at the Bridge" and "Up in Michigan" copyright © 1938 Ernest Hemingway; renewal copyright © 1966 Mary Hemingway

"Capital of the World" was first published under the title "The Horns of the Bull."

"The Gambler, the Nun, and the Radio" was first published under the title "Give Us A Prescription, Doctor."

Table of Contents

CONTENTS

THE SHORT HAPPY LIFE OF FRANCIS MACOMBER

THE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD

THE SNOWS OF KILIMANJARO

OLD MAN AT THE BRIDGE

UP IN MICHIGAN

ON THE QUAI AT SMYRNA

INDIAN CAMP

THE DOCTOR AND THE DOCTOR'S WIFE

THE END OF SOMETHING

THE THREE-DAY BLOW

THE BATTLER

A VERY SHORT STORY

SOLDIER'S HOME

THE REVOLUTIONIST

MR. AND MRS. ELLIOT

CAT IN THE RAIN

OUT OF SEASON

CROSS-COUNTRY SNOW

MY OLD MAN

BIG TWO-HEARTED RIVER: PART I

BIG TWO-HEARTED RIVER: PART II

THE UNDEFEATED

IN ANOTHER COUNTRY

HILLS LIKE WHITE ELEPHANTS

THE KILLERS

CHE TI DICE LA PATRIA?

FIFTY GRAND

A SIMPLE ENQUIRY

TEN INDIANS

A CANARY FOR ONE

AN ALPINE IDYLL

A PURSUIT RACE

TODAY IS FRIDAY

BANAL STORY

NOW I LAY ME

AFTER THE STORM

A CLEAN, WELL-LIGHTED PLACE

THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD

GOD REST YOU MERRY, GENTLEMEN

THE SEA CHANGE

A WAY YOU'LL NEVER BE

THE MOTHER OF A QUEEN

ONE READER WRITES

HOMAGE TO SWITZERLAND

A DAY'S WAIT

A NATURAL HISTORY OF THE DEAD

WINE OF WYOMING

THE GAMBLER, THE NUN, AND THE RADIO

FATHERS AND SONS

Reading Group Guide

Reading Group Guide for The Short Stories
Introduction
In 1923 Ernest Hemingway published his first three short stories, "Up in Michigan" (p. 81), "Out of Season" (p. 171), and "My Old Man" (p. 189), in a slim volume entitled Three Stories and Ten Poems. Fifteen years later he published a collection of forty-nine stories, and by then he was the undisputed master of the short story form. Of The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway Clifton Fadiman said in The New Yorker, "I don't see how you can go through this book without being convinced that Hemingway is the best short story writer...using English."
"The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber"
What are the causes of Francis Macomber's sudden conversion from fear to "the wild unreasonable happiness that he had never known before" (p. 32), what are the implications of his conversion for his and Margot's future, and what are the unanticipated consequences of Margot's killing Francis (p.36-37)?
"The Snows of Kilimanjaro"
How is neglect, the reason for Harry's gangrenous infection, also the cause of a second death for which Harry, the artist, expresses even greater regret (pp 59-60)? What does Harry mean when he says he has "traded" on his talent, and what were the specific temptations to which he admits succumbing at the cost of his artistic integrity?
"Big Two-Hearted River"
Is "Big Two-Hearted River" a story about Nick's testing and controlling his fragile emotions as well as about his setting up camp and catching trout? Why are the "known" and "unknown" so important to Nick, and why does he believe "the fishing would be tragic" in the swamp (p. 231)?
"A Clean Well-Lighted Place"
What does the old waiter reveal when he says he does not like to close up each night "because there may be someone who needs the café" or "a light for the night" (p. 382)? What is the "nothing" or "nada" that he, like the old man, "knew too well" (p. 383), and how could a clean, well-lighted café sometimes lessen "nada's" effect?
"The Killers"
Is "The Killers" "an initiation story"? If so, to what is Nick Adams introduced? After Nick asks killer Max, "What's it all about" (p. 286), "it" appears very often (pp. 286-289), developing meaning incrementally in Nick's growing awareness. What does "it" mean by the time we read George's final line, "Well...you better not think about it" (p. 289)? What is implied by the "wall" to which Ole turns after Nick's warning?

After Reading the Stories
Your group might wish to read other stories from the Hemingway collection which focus upon similar concerns or themes found in the stories listed above. Marital tension and incompatibility are highlighted in "Cat in the Rain," "Out of Season," and with subtle irony in "A Canary for One." Because Nick in "Big Two-Hearted River" is often assumed to be a returning war veteran, "Soldier's Home" serves as an excellent companion piece. "Indian Camp" (p. 89), "The Battler" (p. 127), and "Ten Indians" are Nick Adams "initiation" stories and will complement "The Killers." The importance of the artist's getting the work done, the subject of "The Snows of Kilimanjaro," is a dominant concern throughout Hemingway's fiction and more strongly emphasized in his posthumous novel The Garden of Eden than in any of the other short stories. The very brief story, "The Sea Change" however, (p. 397), should be read first as a stepping stone to that novel.

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