Ernest Hemingway Biography

Ernest Hemingway Biography

Ernest Hemingway played a major role in defining twentieth-century American literature, but his life, art, and image are so deeply intertwined that it is hard to separate them. This is because he had such high standards and because he insisted on a certain type of intense truth in his writing. Since he often wrote about the sort of experience that tested a man’s mettle, he repeatedly risked his life in high-adventure situations. Hemingway served as a Red Cross ambulance driver in World War I (where he was injured by both mortar and machine gun fire), reported on the Spanish Civil War and World War II, worked as a deep sea fisherman, and went on big game safaris throughout Africa. He was in two plane crashes while visiting Africa and was so badly injured in one that some newspapers reported he had been killed. All of this and more showed up in his writing.

Facts and Trivia

  • Hemingway won the Italian Silver Medal for Valor for his actions in World War I. (Even though he had over 200 pieces of mortar shell in his legs, Hemingway carried an injured soldier to medical help.)
  • While his work was well-received by critics almost from the start, Hemingway himself was the subject of much criticism for his morals and behavior. This led to a lot of verbal conflicts—and even some physical ones.
  • In the 1920s, Hemingway was part of a group of American expatriate writers living in Paris. There he socialized—and argued with and learned from—writers such as Ezra Pound, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, and T. S. Eliot.
  • Hemingway married four times, often falling for one woman while still married to another one.
  • After battling depression and poor health for several years, Hemingway shot himself in 1961—just as his father had in 1928.
Additional Content
  • Biography (History of the World: The 20th Century)
  • Biography (Critical Guide to Censorship and Literature)
  • Biography (Literary Essentials: Short Fiction Masterpieces)
  • Biography (Survey of Novels and Novellas)
  • Biography (Society and Self, Critical Representations in Literature)
  • Biography (Literary Masterpieces, Volume 14)
  • Biography (Great Authors of World Literature, Critical Edition)
  • Biography (Masterpieces of American Literature)
  • Biography (Masterpieces of American Literature)
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(The entire section is 15459 words.)