St. Augustine is perhaps the most famous Doctor of the Catholic Church. He was born in Thagaste in North Africa (present-day northeastern Algeria) around AD 354. His father was a pagan and his mother was a Christian, he was raised as a Christian. By the age of sixteen, Augustine went to Carthage to study the … Continue reading Who is Saint Augustine of Hippo?
"He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf Stream and he had gone eighty-four days now without taking a fish" (opening line). The Old Man and the Sea is a rich and deep novella about an old fisherman named Santiago and his Herculean effort to overcome a dry-spell and … Continue reading The Writer’s Endurance: The Old Man and the Sea
"The girl was looking off at the line of hills. They were white in the sun and the country was brown and dry. 'They look like white elephants,' she said." Hemingway's "Hills Like White Elephants" takes place midway between Barcelona and Madrid in a bar at a train station. The station overlooks the Ebro, the … Continue reading A New Beginning in “Hills Like White Elephants”
There is a note at the beginning of Hemingway's "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" about an old Masai legend. The legend tells of a frozen leopard that lies near the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro. No one knows how the leopard got there or where exactly it is. The frozen leopard has been spotted several times over … Continue reading The Experience of Placelessness in “The Snows of Kilimanjaro”
"It was late and every one had left the cafe except an old man who sat in the shadow of the leaves of the tree made against the electric light" (opening lines). Late at night, an old man sits in a cafe in the shadow of a tree while drinking brandy. Two waiters, one older … Continue reading Contemplating Nihilism in “A Clean Well-Lighted Place”
"On The Quai at Smyrna" is an unusual short story by Ernest Hemingway. It is about 1-page in length, but it is hardly a story at all. Instead, it is a stream-of-consciousness collage of images from Smyrna around 1922 in the immediate wake of the Greco-Turkish War. The Greco-Turkish War was a proxy war that … Continue reading Thoughts on “On The Quai at Smyrna”