Meeting with Ernest Hemingway in Piggott (Arkansas, USA)
Lesson 2 Saturday 16 July at 7 AM SLT
Information about past class: Meeting with Ernest Hemingway in Piggott (Arkansas, USA). During this class we revised Grammar, visited to museum, read great story was written by E.Hemigway. Homework and information see on this page http://item1000.blogspot.com Next Saturday (16 July at 7 AM SLT) we are planning to visit to Dockery Farms and the Birth of the Blues.
1. Grammar training. Using passive voice in academic writing.
2. History off the Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum. Excursion, watching video.
3. A Day's Wait (listening, reading description, dicussion)
4. Watching movie-clips. Homework and addition material.
Often in academic writing, we don't want to focus on who is doing an action, but on who is receiving or experiencing the action. The passive voice is thus extremely useful in academic Thwriting because it allows writers to highlight the most important participants or events within sentences by placing them at the beginning of the sentence.
In the following sentences, the passive construction is preferable because you want readers to focus on the result of an action rather than the person doing the action.
Active: Scientists classify glass as a solid.
The passive sentence focuses on how glass is classified, rather than on who classifies glass.
Passive: Glass is classified as a solid.
Active Voice and Passive Voice
Voice is a feature of verbs that shows whether the subject of a sentence is doing the action or having the action done to it.
- Passive Parliament was not informed. (the action is happening to the subject)
- Active The prime minister did not inform Parliament. (the subject is doing the action)
Note that the passive voice allows a writer or speaker to evade responsibility by hiding the identity of the person executing the action. “Gee, Parliament just wasn’t informed. Isn’t that unfortunate? What’s next on the agenda?” The active version of the sentence names names and ascribes actions to a real, live person.
For that reason, the passive voice is most widely used in politics, the business world, or in any other activity involving a bureaucracy. Educators and stylists have been pushing for wider use of the active voice. The SAT reflects this trend. As you may have heard your English teacher say, verb your way through your writing. Use active, focused, forceful verbs, not the same weak passive verbs over and over again.
The active voice usually requires far fewer words than the passive voice to convey the same idea:
- Passive The ball was thrown by the man to his son. (10 words)
- Active The man threw the ball to his son. (8 words)
- Passive The investigation of the war crimes alleged to have been committed by the occupying forces was carried out by an international agency. (22 words)
- Active An international agency led the investigation of the occupying forces’ alleged war crimes. (13 words)
Notice in both examples how we replaced a form of to be with a more active verb:
First example: was replaced bythrew
Second example: was replaced by led
If you see a sentence that contains a form of to be, be on the lookout for an unnecessary passive construction.
Concision is the hallmark of good writing; the active voice is far leaner than the bloated passive voice. Paragraph Improvement sets often include passive constructions that need revision.
The astronauts landed the spaceship in the grass.
The spaceship was landed by the astronauts in the grass.
We ate the hamburgers in the park.
The hamburgers were eaten by us in the park.
The earthquake caused a tsunami that flooded the nuclear reactors.
The tsunami that flooded the nuclear reactors was caused by the earthquake
The virus crashed the computer.
The computer was crashed by/with the virus.
The drunk store attendant lost the key to the cash register.
The key to the cash register was lost by the drunk store attendant.
I ruined my shoes in the mud.
My shoes were ruined in the mud
He lost his car keys.
His car keys were lost (by him)
The wise man came to visit the young king.
The young king was visited by the wise man.
Seven dwarfs helped Snow White with her chores.
Snow White was helped by seven dwarfs with her chores.
Snow White was helped with her chores by Seven dwarfs.
On a dark and stormy night, the tall woman in the dress shot her husband with a .22 caliber pistol.
The husband was shot on a dark and stormy night (by his wife - tall woman in the dress) with a .22 caliber pistol.
For example, consider how effectively Ernest Hemingway shifts from the passive to the active voice in his article “Six men become tankers,” published in the Kansas City Star on April 17, 1918:
“…All of the men taken were of draft age and were given a letter from Col. I. C. Welborn of the Tank Corps, authorizing any local board to immediately induct them into service.
“For several days the men prepare for the coming offensive. The tanks are brought up behind the first line trenches under cover of darkness and the crews crawl into the close, oil-smelling steel shells.
“The machine gunners, artillery men and engineers get into their cramped positions, the commander crawls into his seat, the engines clatter and pound and the great steel monster clanks lumberingly forward.”
The subtle shift from the passive to the active illustrates how a powerful entity--the military--has placed the men into a machine to conduct the work of war.
So how can those of us who do not have the writing talents of Hemingway learn the judicious use of active and passive voice?
Visit to SL-place:
Experience the Ernest Hemingway Museum in Piggot, Arkansas
The Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum and Educational Center, located at 1021 West Cherry Street in Piggott, opened on July 4, 1999. The museum and educational center is designed to contribute to the understanding of the 1920s and 1930s by focusing on the internationally connected Pfeiffer family of Piggott and their son-in-law, Ernest Hemingway. Hemmingway was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Literature in 1953 for the novel The Old Man and the Sea and was named Nobel Laureate in Literature in 1954 for his overall contribution to writing.
The museum includes the Pfeiffer-Janes House and the Hemingway Barn-Studio. W. D. “Buck” Templeton built both structures in 1910. Paul Pfeiffer bought the house and barn in 1913 and moved his family to Piggott from St. Louis, Missouri. Pfeiffer died in 1944, and Mary Pfeiffer continued to live in the house until her death in 1950. The Tom Janes family bought the house in 1950 and owned it until Arkansas State University purchased the property in 1997. Dr. Ruth Hawkins instigated the purchase by ASU as the northern anchor and visitor’s center of the Crowley’s Ridge Parkway, which was the first National Scenic Byway in Arkansas. Both the house and barn were placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.
Hemingway married Pauline Pfeiffer in Paris, France, on May 10, 1927, after he divorced his first wife. Pfeiffer, the daughter of Paul and Mary Pfeiffer, was in Paris on assignment for Vogue magazine.
In the spring of 1928, Hemingway and his wife, Pauline, came to Piggott for him to meet his in-laws and to await the birth of their first child. This was Hemingway’s first visit to Piggott. In the following years, he often spent time in Piggott hunting quail, writing, and spending time with his in-laws. While they were in Piggott, Hemingway claimed the small barn as his private place to write; he was working on the novel A Farewell to Arms. Returning to Piggott at the end of July, after the birth of his son Patrick, Hemingway found it too hot to work on his novel. He went west to write, and fish, in a cooler climate.
In 1932, Hemingway brought his wife and three children, a nine-year-old son from his first marriage and his two sons with Pauline, to Piggott for one of their winter holiday visits. One of his short stories, ”A Day’s Wait,” was written about this visit and published in a short story collection the following summer. Prior to this visit, his sister-in-law, Virginia Pfeiffer, had remodeled the barn loft to create a studio for Hemingway. A fire in the studio during that visit destroyed many of Hemingway’s belongings. Evidence of the fire is visible on an outside wall of the barn-studio. The structure was repaired, and a new flue was built so that Hemingway could continue to use the space.
Areas of emphasis for the museum include examining literature of the 1930s through the works of Ernest Hemingway and other writers of his era; providing insight into the impact of Piggott and the Pfeiffer family on Ernest Hemingway and his writing; examining world events from the perspective of a family with global connections; examining the development of northeast Arkansas during the 1930s, including the establishment of drainage districts, development of roads, growth of agriculture, etc.; providing educational programs and tours for elementary, secondary and adult students; offering seminars, conferences, workshops, day camps, retreats, credit and non-credit classes; and the encouraging of creative writing.
The museum presents the Pfeiffer-Janes House and the Hemingway Barn-Studio as they would have appeared during the time Hemingway visited there. Most of the furnishings, including many Stickley pieces, were owned by Paul and Mary Pfeiffer and were in use when Hemingway was in Piggott.
Listening from Youtube: Ernest Hemingway - A Day's Wait or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wIcHKH4cA0
A DAY’S WAIT
By Ernest Hemingway
He came into the room to shut the windows while we were still in bed and I saw he looked ill. He was shivering, his face was white, and he walked slowly as though it ached to move.
"What's the matter, Schatz?"
"I've got a headache."
"You better go back to bed."
"No. I'm all right."
"You go to bed. I'll see you when I'm dressed."
But when I came downstairs he was dressed, sitting by the fire, looking a very sick and miserable boy of nine years. When I put my hand on his forehead I knew he had a fever.
"You go up to bed," I said, "you're sick."
"I'm all right," he said.
When the doctor came he took the boy's temperature.
"What is it?" I asked him.
"One hundred and two."
Downstairs, the doctor left three different medicines in different colored capsules with instructions for giving them. One was to bring down the fever, another a purgative, the third to overcome an acid condition. The germs of influenza can only exist in an acid condition, he explained. He seemed to know all about influenza and said there was nothing to worry about if the fever did not go above one hundred and four degrees. This was a light epidemic of flu and there was no danger if you avoided pneumonia.
Back in the room I wrote the boy's temperature down and made a note of the time to give the various capsules.
"Do you want me to read to you?"
"All right. If you want to," said the boy. His face was very white and there were dark areas under his eyes. He lay still in the bed and seemed very detached from what was going on.
I read aloud from Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates; but I could see he was not following what I was reading.
"How do you feel, Schatz?" I asked him.
"Just the same, so far," he said.
I sat at the foot of the bed and read to myself while I waited for it to be time to give another capsule. It would have been natural for him to go to sleep, but when I looked up he was looking at the foot of the bed, looking very strangely.
"Why don't you try to go to sleep? I'll wake you up for the medicine."
"I'd rather stay awake."
After a while he said to me, "You don't have to stay in here with me, Papa, if it bothers you."
"It doesn't bother me."
"No, I mean you don't have to stay if it's going to bother you."
I thought perhaps he was a little lightheaded and after giving him the prescribed capsules at eleven o'clock I went out for a while.
It was a bright, cold day, the ground covered with a sleet that had frozen so that it seemed as if all the bare trees, the bushes, the cut brush and all the grass and the bare ground had been varnished with ice. I took the young Irish setter for a little walk up the road and along a frozen creek, but it was difficult to stand or walk on the glassy surface and the red dog slipped and slithered and I fell twice, hard, once dropping my gun and having it slide away over the ice.
We flushed a covey of quail under a high clay bank with overhanging brush and I killed two as they went out of sight over the top of the bank. Some of the covey lit in trees, but most of them scattered into brush piles and it was necessary to jump on the ice-coated mounds of brush several times before they would flush. Coming out while you were poised unsteadily on the icy, springy brush they made difficult shooting and I killed two, missed five, and started back pleased to have found a covey close to the house and happy there were so many left to find on another day.
At the house they said the boy had refused to let any one come into the room.
"You can't come in," he said. "You mustn't get what I have."
I went up to him and found him in exactly the position I had left him, white-faced, but with the tops of his cheeks flushed by the fever, staring still, as he had stared, at the foot of the bed.
I took his temperature.
"What is it?"
"Something like a hundred," I said. It was one hundred and two and four tenths.
"It was a hundred and two," he said.
"Who said so?"
"Your temperature is all right," I said. "It's nothing to worry about."
"I don't worry," he said, "but I can't keep from thinking."
"Don't think," I said. "Just take it easy."
"I'm taking it easy," he said and looked straight-ahead. He was evidently holding tight onto himself about something.
"Take this with water."
"Do you think it will do any good?"
"Of course it will."
I sat down and opened the Pirate book and commenced to read, but I could see he was not following, so I stopped.
"About what time do you think I'm going to die?" he asked.
"About how long will it be before I die?"
"You aren't going to die. What's the matter with you?"
"Oh, yes, I am. I heard him say a hundred and two."
"People don't die with a fever of one hundred and two. That's a silly way to talk."
"I know they do. At school in France the boys told me you can't live with forty-four degrees. I've got a hundred and two."
He had been waiting to die all day, ever since nine o'clock in the morning.
"You poor Schatz," I said. "Poor old Schatz. It's like miles and kilometres. You aren't going to die. That's a different thermometer. On that thermometer thirty-seven is normal. On this kind it's ninety-eight."
"Are you sure?"
"Absolutely," I said. "It's like miles and kilometers. You know, like how many kilometers we make when we do seventy miles in the car?"
"Oh," he said.
But his gaze at the foot of the bed relaxed slowly. The hold over himself relaxed too, finally, and the next day it was very slack and he cried very easily at little things that were of no importance.
A Day's Wait" (1936) is a brief story by Ernest Hemingway that conveys the seemingly tragic outcome of miscommunication between a boy and his father.
Schatz is a nine-year-old boy who becomes sick one winter night. After a doctor is called, it is determined that Schatz has contracted the flu and has a high fever. It is considered only a mild case, and the doctor leaves medicine for the boy, who overhears the physician tell the father that the boy's temperature is 102 degrees. It is this information that causes the perceived conflict and misunderstanding between the boy and his father.
Schatz is put to bed, and his father maintains a steady watch over him, reading from a book about pirates. But Schatz seems unusually detached and when his father suggests he get some sleep, the boy refuses. The father reads to himself for a while, but the boy remains awake and—strangely it seems to the father—suggests that the father leave "if it bothers you." The father tries to reassure the boy, but he again tells the father to go "if it bothers you."
Thinking that the boy is simply a bit light-headed, the father leaves the room and takes the family dog for a walk along the frozen creek. The dog flushes a covey of quail, and the father kills several before triumphantly returning from the hunt to find Schatz still white-faced at the foot of the bed. After the father takes Schatz's temperature, the boy demands to know what it was. "Something like a hundred," the father responds, although it is actually still above 102. The father gives Schatz his medicine and a glass of water, but the boy still seems unusually concerned. Once again he reads to his son about pirates, but he sees that Schatz is not paying attention, so he stops. The boy suddenly asks, "About what time do you think I'm going to die?"
The stunned father is taken aback, but Schatz asks him again when he will die. The father tells him all will be okay, and calls it silly talk. But then Schatz explains: "At school in France the boys told me you can't live with forty-four degrees. I've got a hundred and two."
The exasperated father quickly explains to his son about the difference between Fahrenheit and Celsius thermometers, comparing them to miles and kilometers. The boy slowly relaxes, and by the next day "he cried very easily at little things that were of no importance."
Although the father shows genuine concern over his son's condition, he fails to recognize the boy's misunderstanding of the doctor's diagnosis and the son's mistaken belief that he would die from the high Fahrenheit temperature, confusing it with the Celsius form commonly used in many other parts of the world. Additionally, the father inadvertently confirms the boy's fears when he goes hunting after Schatz suggests he should leave.
Hemingway's ambiguous ending—the description of the boy as crying "very easily at little things that were of no importance"—suggests how easily the reader too can misinterpret information. Was this the boy's regular reaction to the little things in life (had he in fact returned to normal), or had his long day's wait for death affected him forever?
Questions for discussion:
1. Do you think the boy's actions were silly or brave? Explain.
2. What does the boy think that he will die? What is the meaning of the
3. Which of the boy's words and actions give clues that he thinks
something is wrong?
4. Do you think the story is about bravery or fear? Explain. Was this story
fiction or non-fiction?
“A Day’s Wait” by Ernest Hemingway
Literary Analysis: Connecting Elements of a Short Story
Use a separate piece of paper to respond to the questions below. Use complete sentences, correct verb tense, and pronouns that directly relate to their antecedents.
1. The plot of a story is made up of a series of related events that include the conflict the climax, and the resolution. The conflict is a struggle between opposing people or forces. The conflict may be either external, between a character and another character or an outside force; or internal, within a character’s mind. The climax is the highest dramatic moment of the story, the point at which the conflict comes to a head. The resolution is how the conflict turns out.
Identify the conflict, climax, and resolution of “A Day’s Wait.” Cite passages from the story to support each answer.
a. conflict: ___________________________________________________________
b. climax: ____________________________________________________________
c. resolution: _________________________________________________________
2. Characters are the people, and in some cases animals, involved in the action of a story. A writer can reveal a character’s personality through a variety of techniques, including direct statements about the character, the character’s actions and comments, and what other characters say about the character. Briefly describe the two main characters in “A Day’s Wait,” and explain how Hemingway develops each of these characters. Cite examples from the story for support.
a. Schatz _________________________________________________________
b. Papa __________________________________________________________
3. Point of view is the vantage point from which a story is told. In a first-person point of view, the narrator is a character who is involved in the action. In a third-person limited point of view, the narrator is not involved in the story and reveals only the thoughts of a single character. In a third-person omniscient point of view, the narrator, who is not involved in the story, can see into the minds of all the characters. Identify the point of view in “A Day’s Wait” and explain how you think the point of view affected your response to events in the story.
4. The setting is the time and place of the story events. Identify the setting of “A Day’s Wait.” Explain why the time is a key element in the story, and analyze how the setting affects the story’s mood, or the feeling you get as you read.
5. Theme is the general idea about life that the author wants to communicate. Sometimes the theme is stated directly. More often the theme is revealed indirectly through the characters and events in the story. State the theme of “A Day’s Wait,” and identify how it is revealed.
Flying for watching TV to SL-place:
Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961), born in Oak Park, Illinois, started his career as a writer in a newspaper office in Kansas City at the age of seventeen. After the United States entered the First World War, he joined a volunteer ambulance unit in the Italian army. Serving at the front, he was wounded, was decorated by the Italian Government, and spent considerable time in hospitals. After his return to the United States, he became a reporter for Canadian and American newspapers and was soon sent back to Europe to cover such events as the Greek Revolution.
During the twenties, Hemingway became a member of the group of expatriate Americans in Paris, which he described in his first important work, The Sun Also Rises (1926). Equally successful was A Farewell to Arms (1929), the study of an American ambulance officer's disillusionment in the war and his role as a deserter. Hemingway used his experiences as a reporter during the civil war in Spain as the background for his most ambitious novel, For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940). Among his later works, the most outstanding is the short novel, The Old Man and the Sea (1952), the story of an old fisherman's journey, his long and lonely struggle with a fish and the sea, and his victory in defeat.
Hemingway - himself a great sportsman - liked to portray soldiers, hunters, bullfighters - tough, at times primitive people whose courage and honesty are set against the brutal ways of modern society, and who in this confrontation lose hope and faith. His straightforward prose, his spare dialogue, and his predilection for understatement are particularly effective in his short stories, some of which are collected in Men Without Women (1927) and The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories (1938). Hemingway died in Idaho in 1961.