Race and Identity in Hemingway’s Fiction
Examines how Hemingway’s lifelong interest in race and racial difference complicates his creation of the white male protagonist and helps to define American identity. Strong writes: “Some of the most celebrated concepts found in Hemingway’s works—freedom, individuality, innocence, loss, and masculinity—are completely enmeshed and entwined with racial tropes of whiteness versus blackness, dominance versus subordination, conquest versus discovery.” Argues that early stories such as “Indian Camp,” “Ten Indians,” and “The Doctor and the Doctor’s Wife” reveal the brutality historically associated with white-Indian relations. Strong addresses white supremacist attitudes in “The Battler” and “The Light of the World” and imperialism in “The Short, Happy Life of Francis Macomber” and “The Snows of Kilimanjaro.” Examines race, ethnicity, and homosexuality in The Garden of Eden and discusses Hemingway’s ambivalence regarding race and racial identity in Under Kilimanjaro. Compares Hemingway’s sympathy with the Africans who lost their land and positions of power in these later texts to the Native Americans of his early stories.