Skip to main content

Book Review: The Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway

Before death a man ought to think more about his past life. The same is evident in ‘The Snows of Kilimanjaro’ of Hemingway. One recurring theme of Hemingway’s work is death, he mostly talks about it and then in the end one or two characters pass away without much fuss and commotion.


In The Snows of Kilimanjaro there are total five flashbacks. Harry and his rich wife Helen are stuck in the wilderness of Africa, near the Kilimanjaro Mountain. Harry has developed gangrene: he got the wound while taking a photo of a herd of waterbucks.

He is frustrated with his life’s overall performance as a writer. He misbehaves with Helen and keeps drinking whisky-soda. He is of the opinion that he wasted his life by marrying a rich woman and taken a life of sloth and luxury rather than working hard

He is so careless that he didn’t apply iodine on his wound as a result his leg is rotting day by day, which also indicates that how his soul is rotting day by day, as he was always indulged in self-infliction intentionally or unintentionally. While his stay in Africa, Harry ruminates a lot about his past life’s experiences taken in Paris, Karagatch, Constantinople, etc. Through the flashback stories of good and bad times spent in different countries including the war days, one can make out that Harry never had that settled life which he always thought of. Probably this pain made him so careless that he no more cares about his life and with a curable gangrene he feels insecure and on the verge of death.

He had started good life from Africa. Hence, Africa is the place where he hoped to start life afresh. But he thinks he is going to die of gangrene; he’s grown pessimistic of the same. On the other side, Helen is optimistic about finding a solution and is of the opinion that soon a plane would come from Nairobi to take them away. The woman takes care of him but he feels no gratitude for her, rather blames her for his decline.

One night he dreams of the plane and a man called Compton, he is on the plane, beneath he sees the plain and its dust and as the plane rises he experiences the white snows of Kilimanjaro which gives him the feeling that he is being taken to a paradise or to place where god exists.

Soon around midnight Helen wakes up to the whining hyena. In the torchlight she sees the hyena and Harry lying dead in his cot, the dressing bandage from his wounded leg has been disappeared.

The writer has made contrast difference between the plain landscape and the height of the mountains Kilimanjaro. The plain and dusty landscape depicts the struggle and pain of life where as the inaccessible Mountain like Kilimanjaro to which the writer has referred as the place of god is considered a place like heaven and the dead leopard there underlines the value of immortality. Just before death, Harry experiences the paradise-like place on the snow-covered top of Kilimanjaro.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond

Among all Ruskin Bond books, The Blue Umbrella has, so far, gathered immense applaud from readers and critics alike.  This is a short novel, but the kind of moral lessons it teaches to us are simply overwhelming. This is a story of Binya, a poor little girl living with her mother and an elder brother, Bijju, in a small hilly village of Garhwal. One day while herding her two cows back home, she stumbles upon some city people enjoying the picnic in the valley. She is enthralled to see them well-groomed and rich. She craves to be one like them and among many other things of their, a blue frilly umbrella catches her attention. She begins craving for it. On the other hand, the city people get attracted by her innocent beauty and the pendant in her neck. The pendant consists of leopard’s claw – which is considered a mascot widely in the hills. Binya trades her pendant off with the blue umbrella. The blue umbrella is so much beautiful that soon it becomes a topic of conversation fo

Character Sketch of Binya from ‘The Blue Umbrella’ by Ruskin Bond

The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond is a popular children’s story. It features Binya as the main character, though there are other important characters as well, but the story revolves around Binya and her little beautiful umbrella. The story is widely popular among children, thus it has also been included in the schools’ syllabus all across the country. Since it is often taught in the school, thus the character sketch of Binya is often demanded by students from year to year. Character Sketch of Binya from The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond Binya is the main character of the novel ‘The Blue Umbrella’ by Ruskin Bond. Her full name is Binyadevi. As in the hills or anywhere in India it is a kind of trend to call children with their short nicknames. Binya’s elder brother’s name is Bijju, whereas his real name is Vijay. Binya aged eleven is a hilly girl. She lives with her small family in the hills of Garhwal. Her father died when she was two years of age. For sustenance, the

Poem Summary: Where The Mind Is Without Fear by Rabindranath Tagore

Poem by Rabindranath Tagore: Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high Where knowledge is free Where the world has not been broken up into fragments By narrow domestic walls Where words come out from the depth of truth Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit Where the mind is led forward by thee Into ever-widening thought and action Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake. Short Summary: This poem is written by Rabindranath Tagore during pre-independence days, when India was a colony of the British. The underlying theme of the poem is absolute freedom; the poet wants the citizens of his country to be living in a free state. According to the poem, we see that the poet is expressing his views there should be a country, like where people live without any sort of fear and with pure dignity…they should