Fifty Years of Hemingway Criticism

By (author) Peter L. Hays

Hardback - £68.00

Publication date:

07 November 2013

Length of book:

278 pages


Scarecrow Press

ISBN-13: 9780810892835

A master of short story, novel, and nonfiction prose, Ernest Hemingway has been the subject of countless books, articles, and biographies. The Nobel–prize winning author and his work continue to interest academics, whose studies of his personal life are frequently intertwined with examinations of his writing.

Fifty Years of Hemingway Criticism, noted scholar Peter L. Hays has assembled a career-spanning collection of essays that explore the many facets of Hemingway—his life, his contemporaries, and his creative output. Although Hays has published on other writers, Hemingway has been his main research interest, and this selection constitutes five decades of criticism. Arranged by subject matter, these essays focus on the novels The Sun Also Rises, A Farewell to Arms, For Whom the Bell Tolls, and The Old Man and the Sea, as well as the short stories “The Undefeated,” “The Killers,” “Soldier’s Home,” and “A Clean Well-Lighted Place.” Other chapters explore Hemingway’s relationship with F. Scott Fitzgerald; teaching Hemingway in the classroom; and comparing Hemingway’s work to writers such as Eugene O’Neill, Ford Madox Ford, and William Faulkner.

When first published, some of these essays offered original views and insights that have since become standard interpretations, making them invaluable to readers. Easily accessible by both general readers and academic scholars,
Fifty Years of Hemingway Criticism is an essential collection on one of America’s greatest writers.
Hays, a professor emeritus at the University of California, Davis, has collected his writings about Hemingway published over 50 years in such sources as The Hemingway Review, South Atlantic Quarterly, and Studies in Humanities. The 32 essays cover such topics as Hemingway’s style, themes, and reading, autobiographical elements in his fiction, his debts to such writers as Herman Melville, Henry James, and William Faulkner, and teaching Hemingway. There are essays about the cinematic quality of his style, his clinical depression, and similarities between 'The Killers' and Harold Pinter’s The Birthday Party. One of the most interesting essays explains parallels between F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and The Sun Also Rises. Hays has updated the endnotes for older essays and provides an extensive bibliography. There is a name and title index, as well as seven photographs. The collection serves as a good introduction to Hemingway studies and also demonstrates the variety of approaches to interpreting his novels and stories.