Analyzing short fiction not only helps you learn more about some of the elements it takes to write fiction, the analysis can help you learn more about the author of the work and, in many cases, even something about yourself. While different readers can analyze the same short story and come away with different points of view, there are a few basic elements you can look for that will help you more effectively break down and understand the short stories you read. Read the short story once as a reader.
A bearing burned out on their truck, and Harry is talking about the gangrene that has infected his leg when he did not apply iodine after he scratched it. As they wait for a rescue plane from Nairobi that he knows won't arrive on time, Harry spends his time drinking and insulting Helen.
Harry reviews his life, realizing that he wasted his talent through procrastination and luxury from a marriage to a wealthy woman that he doesn't love. In a series of flashbacks, Harry recalls the mountains of Bulgaria and Constantinople, as well as the suddenly hollow, sick feeling of being alone in Paris.
Later, there were Turks, and an American poet talking nonsense about the Dada movement, and headaches and quarrels, and watching people whom he would later write about. Uneasily, he recalls a boy who'd been frozen, his body half-eaten by dogs, and a wounded officer so entangled in a wire fence that his bowels spilled over it.
As Harry lies on his cot, he is aware that vultures are walking around his makeshift camp, and a hyena lurks in the shadows. Knowing that he will die before he wakes, Harry goes to sleep and good short stories to write a literary analysis on that the rescue plane is taking him to a snow covered summit of Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa.
Helen wakes, and taking a flashlight, walks toward Harry's cot. Seeing that his leg is dangling alongside the cot and that the dressings are pulled down, she calls his name repeatedly. She listens for his breathing and can hear nothing.
Outside the tent, the hyena whines — a cry that is strangely human. Analysis Hemingway opens his story with an epigraph, a short, pithy observation about a lone leopard who sought the tip of Kilimanjaro literally, "The House of God". The African safari was Harry's attempt to put his life back on track.
Harry, the central character, has been living a life of sloth, luxury, and procrastination, so this safari was supposed to bring him back to the virtues of hard work, honesty, and struggle as a step in the right direction. Living off of his wife's wealth has led him down a path of steady, artistic decline and he knows it.
Also interesting to note is that both Harry and Hemingway were of the "Lost Generation" of World War I who had to rebuild their lives after being wounded in combat and seeing the horrors of war. This particular work, some have asserted, seems to reflect both Harry's and Hemingway's concerns about leaving unfinished business behind as a writer and the proper lifestyle for a writer that is conducive to writing on a daily basis.
Hemingway was quoted as saying once that "politics, women, drink, money, and ambition" ruin writers. Concerning the structure of this story, note that Hemingway divides it into six sections and within each of these sections inserts a flashback that appears in italic, continually juxtaposing the hopeless, harrowing present with the past, which often seemed full of promise.
The flashbacks themselves center around concerns about the erosion of values: They are a mix of hedonism, sentimentality toward the human condition, and leaving unfinished business.
Here, in this story, the symbolism of Kilimanjaro is contrasted with the symbolism of the plains. Harry is dying in the plains from gangrene, a stinking, putrid, and deadly infection, causing his body to rot and turn greenish black.
Against Harry's background of dark, smelly horror and hopelessness, Hemingway contrasts Harry's memories of the good times that he had in the mountains. Good things happen in the mountains; bad things happen on the plains. Hemingway ends his story with Harry's spirit triumphant, as when Harry dies, his spirit is released and travels to the summit of the mighty mountain where the square top of Kilimanjaro is "wide as all the world"; it is incredibly white as it shines dazzlingly in the sunlight.
The mountain is brilliant, covered with pure white snow; it is incredibly clean — a clean, well-lighted place. It is important to note here that there were three deeds throughout Harry's life that facilitated his otherworldly trip to Kilimanjaro at the time of this death: Giving away his last morphine pills that he saved for himself to his friend Williamson, who is in horrendous pain Harry's intention to write the mental writing of the flashbacks in his painful stupor Sacrificing himself to his wife as opposed to absolving himself During his otherworldly flight over Kilimanjaro, Harry sees the legendary leopard.
The dead, preserved leopard can be seen as a symbol of immortality, a reward for taking the difficult road. Harry himself was a "leopard" at certain times in his life, as were some of his acquaintances in his own stories. Specifically, Harry can be seen as a leopard during His youth, when he lived in a poor neighborhood of Paris as a writer In the war, when he gave his last morphine pills for himself to the horribly suffering Williamson On his deathbed, when he mentally composes flashbacks and uses his intention to write When he stays loyal to his wife and does not confess to her that he never really loved her Some mystic impulse within Harry and within the leopard drove them to seek out God, or the god within themselves, or immortality that resided far from ugly, mundane reality.A Guide to Writing the Literary Analysis Essay.
I. INTRODUCTION: the first paragraph in your essay. It begins creatively in order to A good thesis may also. suggest the organization of the paper. PRIMARY SOURCE: The literary work (novel, play, story. Summary. Harry, a writer, and his wife, Helen, are stranded while on safari in Africa.
A bearing burned out on their truck, and Harry is talking about the gangrene that has infected his leg when he did not apply iodine after he scratched it.
Books shelved as literary-analysis: How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster, The Hero With a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell, The P. Books shelved as literary-analysis: How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster, The Hero With a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell, The P.
Students are asked to write literary analysis essays because this type of assignment encourages you to think about how and why a poem, short story, novel, or play was written.
To successfully analyze literature, you’ll need to remember that authors make specific choices for particular reasons. Your literary analysis of a short story will often be in the form of an essay where you may be asked to give your opinions of the short story at the end.
Choose the .