Similiraties and differences between the American in "Hills like White Elephants" and Bill from "20/20" by Linda Brewer.

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teachertaylor | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The American man in Hemingway's "Hills Like White Elephants" is very similar in character to Bill in Brewer's "20/20."  In both stories, the men are seen with their partners sharing relatively intimate situations:  the American is talking to Jig about her pregnancy, and Bill is talking with his partner about the scenes that they are passing on their car trip.  The women are attempting to share their perspective with the men; however, the men have their own ideas about things and will not attempt to see the women's points of view. 

For example, Jig is trying to tell the American man about how she feels regarding her pregnancy and desire to keep the child.  He, on the other hand, is trying to convince her to have an abortion and that everything will be alright if she just has the operation.  He tells her that he loves her now, but his tone does not appear ultimately convincing.  In the end, Jig just tells him that she is fine because he has dismissed her thoughts about the baby and their future together.  Similarly, Bill's partner tells him about all the things that she sees on the side of the road as they are driving.  She imagines that she sees Bigfoot, and Bill thinks that her ideas are simply ridiculous.  He does not have the imaginative abilities of his partner, and he simply writes her off as unintelligent.

So both men fail to see any other perspective rather than the one that they already have which to them appears as reasonable and realistic.  In the end, neither sees what he has just lost in the failure to make a connection with these women.

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