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The Life of Ernest Hemingway

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Ernest Miller Hemingway was born in the morning of July 21, 1899 in Oak Park, Illinois to Dr. Clarence and Grace Hemingway. He was the second born in a family of six but was the first son. His father was a physician, and his both parents were committed Christians. Oak Park was a primarily Protestant area, upper middle-class suburb of Chicago which was basically conservative. Hemingway was raised with the conservative Midwestern values of hard work, strong religion, self determination as well as physical fitness; if one adhered to these parameters, he was taught, he would be ensured of success in life.  As a young boy, Ernest Hemingway was taught by his father to fish along the shores as well as hunt in the forests surrounding Lake Michigan. He spent much of his time either fishing or hunting and hence he discovered early in life the serenity found while alone in the forest or wading in the streams. When Hemingway wasn't hunting or fishing he spent time with his mother who taught him basics in music.

Hemingway got his formal schooling in the Oak Park public school system. While in high school he took part in playing several sports such as playing football, water basketball swimming, and also served as the track team manager. It was during time that he began his writing; He normally enjoyed writing in his high school newspaper called Trapeze in which he wrote his first articles. His writing was characterized by humour. When he graduated in 1917, he did not proceed to college instead he immediately took a job as a cub reporter for the Kansas City Star which his uncle Tyler who was a friend to the Editorial team helped him to get and he worked for duration of 6months. He later joined a volunteer ambulance unit in Italy during World War I (Hemingway, 56).

Participation in World War 1

When he turned eighteen years after his graduation he tried to join the army but was rejected due to his poor vision.It was during the same time that he heard that the Red Cross was taking in volunteers as ambulance drivers and he joined as a ambulance driver. On July 8, 1918, only a few weeks after his arrival, Hemingway was seriously wounded by fragments from an Austrian mortar shell. Despite his wounded state Hemingway sacrificed so much to help the Italian soldiers. He was awarded the Italian Silver Medal for Valor with the official Italian citation reading: "Gravely wounded by numerous pieces of shrapnel from an enemy shell, with an admirable spirit of brotherhood, before taking care of himself, he rendered generous assistance to the Italian soldiers more seriously wounded by the same explosion and did not allow himself to be carried elsewhere until after they had been evacuated."(Nelson and Jones, 38) He was severely wounded, and spent significant time in hospitals. During his recovery period in the hospital Hemingway had an affair with an American nurse, Agnes von Kurowsky, and this gave basis and inspired the writing for the novel A FAREWELL TO ARMS (1929).

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He returned home to Oak park January of 1919.His parents pressured him to either look for a job or to further his education, but Hemingway never paid interest to them. He had received some $1,000 dollars in insurance payments for his war wounds, which catered for him and hence never worked for nearly one year. During this period he spent time at the library reading or speaking to organizations about the war.

Marriage life and writing career

In the beginning of 1920 Hemingway, started working in Toronto where he worked as a staff writer and foreign correspondent for the Toronto Star Weekly. He met Hadley Richardson and fell in love later the two married in 3rd September 1921. Few months later they left for Paris. During his first 20 months in Paris, Hemingway registered 88 stories for the Toronto Star, covered various incidences such as the Greco-Turkish war (Baker, 88).In October 10 1923, their son John Hadley was born in Toronto. Their marriage began having hitches in 1926 when Hemingway began an affair with Pauline Pfeiffer as he was working on The Sun Also Rises. They divorced in January 1927, and Hemingway married Pauline Pfeiffer in May the same year. Pauline gave birth to Patrick Hemingway on June 28 1928 in Kansas. They later travelled to Wyoming, Massachusetts and New York. His third son Gregory Hemingway was born in November 1931. He later travelled to East Africa where he got materials to write on The Green Hills of Africa.

In 1937 during the Second World War he reported for the Spanish civil war. I t was during this time that he met Martha Gellhorn a journalist and writer whom he later married in November 20, 1940. In 1947 Hemingway was presented a Bronze Star for his braveness and courage during World War II.  In 1946 He married his fourth wife Mary Welsh a correspondent with the Time magazine in England.

In May 1952 Hemingway became an international celebrity, and won the Pulitzer Prize after his book The Old man and the sea became a book-of-the month selection. Later in October 1954 Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Sickness and Death

Hemingway was getting depressed when he began losing most his literary friends. He also suffered injuries from the accidents he had while in Africa. From the end of the year in 1955 to early 1956, Hemingway was bedridden, and was advised to stop drinking. In 1960 he suffered mental deterioration and was hospitalized at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, for treatment of depression, and discharged in 1961. On July 2 1961Hemingway committed suicide with his favorite shotgun at his home in Ketchum, Idaho. Hemingway was one of the famous American novelist, short-story writer and essayist, whose deceptively simple writing style has influenced wide range of writers up to date (Biography of Ernest Hemingway, para 8).

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