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Word Count: 334
Ernest Hemingways Big Two-Hearted River is nearly an autobiographical short story Like the main character Nick Hemingway often took trips into nature to escape the bondage of civilization There are a few references to the tension and anxiety that Nick is feeling as he begins his journey First of all Hemingway makes constant reference to the weight of the pack on Nicks back One can get a feel for Nicks tension as he often stops to rest and makes mention of the pain in his back and shoulders Hemingway also made form to follow content in that whenever Nick stands and climbs his spirits are likewise rising If he sits or descends on the other hand he is feeling badly about himself Secondly Nicks tension is portrayed in the fact that he has come on this nature hike to create his own utopia that he cannot find in civilization Hemingway uses the repetition of the word good to mimic the Old Testament account of creation As Nick sets up camp he assesses his situation and calls it good His good place is almost a self-created heaven of sorts a heaven of his creation away from the darkness and reality of civilization At times the swamp and river reflect Nicks tension The cold strong current works against Nick as he is fishing and the swamp intrudes upon his fishing causing his line to get caught thereby causing him to lose a trout Nick also decides not to go into the swamp claiming that fishing in the swamp is a tragic adventure At another point the swamp symbolizes Nicks inner anxiety as he observes the swamp to be an area bad for fishing with little sunlight Hemingways repetitive style of writing allows the reader to pick out the underlying themes easily His use of the same word or same descriptions allows the reader to know what Hemingway is referring to without having to delve too deeply into
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