‘Hills Like White Elephants’ by Ernest Hemingway

What is remarkable to me about this Hemingway story is how timeless the exchange is between the characters. And, how Hemingway trusts the reader’s intelligence to figure out what is going on in that train station by what is not being said. There is the story and then there is the experience that each reader brings to it. And, it is interesting that final words belong to the girl: “There’s nothing wrong with me. I feel fine.” Has her lover convinced her to do what he wants? Each re-reading, I change my mind.

First published in transition August 1927 and in the collection Men Without Women, Charles Scribner’s Sons 1927. Widely anthologized

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