Ernest Hemingway’s Code Hero in For Who The Bell Tolls and A Farewell To ArmsThey were American innocents negotiating the river of life wherever it took them: to Italy, to Spain, to Africa, to the Caribbean, wounded men laughing through the pain, sometimes risking their skins but never sacrificing their honor. It was a river into which countless writers would thrust their paddles.(Papa)
Ernest Hemingway is arguably one of the most important writers in American history. Though this is disputed, Hemingway has undoubtedly had a major influence on contemporary American literature. One aspect of Hemingway’s famous writing that shines in almost all of his works is the hero. Hemingway created the famous Hemingway code by which all of his heroes, often called code heroes, lived. One critic asserted that, ‘Hemingway invented more than a style he invented the Hemingway hero.’ (Papa) Hemingway attempted to live by this code but did not enjoy the success of his fictional characters. In fact, critic Joseph DeFalco states, ‘The type of hero that can accomplish such a feat [living up to the Hemingway code] is rare in any area of life.’ (195) The code hero was not rare, however, in Hemingway writing. Robert Jordan in For Whom The Bell Tolls and Frederic Henry in A Farewell To Arms are perfect examples of the Hemingway code hero.
The Hemingway code is, ?a grace under pressure. It is made of the controls of honor and courage which in a life of tension and pain make a man a man and distinguish him from the people who follow random impulses.? (Young 63) Additionally, this ?grace under pressure? can be expressed as, ?an ability to be in difficult situations without succumbing to either panic, enthusiasm, or indifference, is the hall…
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Molesworth, Charles. ?Hemingway?s Code: The Spanish Civil War and World Power.?Blowing the Bridge. Ed. Rena Sanderson. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1992. 83-97.
Norton, Charles A. ?The Alcoholic Content of A Farewell to Arms.? Hemingway in Italy and Other Essays. Ed. Robert W. Lewis. New York: Praeger Publishing, 1990. 309-313.
?Papa and All His Children,? U.S. News & World Report: 1 Jun. 1998, Vol. 124: Issue 2.Mas Full Text Premiere.
Rehberger, Dean. ?I Don?t Know Buffalo Bill?s; or Hemingway and the Rhetoric of the Western .? Blowing the Bridge. Ed. Rena Sanderson. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1992. 159-184.
Young, Phillip. Ernest Hemingway: A Reconsideration. University Park: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1966.