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A Man Can Be Destroyed But Can Not Be Defeated

Hemingway is a great novelist of America. His life can be divided into two aspects – the bright and the dark. The bright aspect of his life shows his fondness for writing novels, boxing, bull fighting and fishing, which led him to great adventures. Such adventures earned him respect and stood him a great novelist of Europe. The other aspect made his life painful because of disloyal love, which stood hurdles and brought great hardships in his life and compelled him to commit suicide. From his life, one can scrutinize a considerable experience and dexterity in different professions. The great evidence is his novel,” The Old Man and Sea”, which surprises the readers by narrating invincibility of an old man against fatal hardships.

It is a great work that narrates adventures of a hero. The novelist selects an old man a hero, named Santiago, full of experience, patience, natural love and commiseration. Simultaneously he is pusillanimous to some extant. It is evident from his words where he compares himself to the green turtle. He is of the opinion that When the turtle is caught, his heart’s beating increases to hundred times. So the old man is like that when he comes under difficulties, in beginning he becomes pale and looks for help. Even he himself confesses that through May he eats white eggs and drinks a cup of shark liver daily to be a man of great strength, so as to be stronger in Sept and Oct for the truly big fish.

The writer tries to make him quite different from the green turtle by introducing the role of chance or fate. He plays a very nice trick that adds an uncontrollable heroic spirit to him and by which he performed a great adventure. Undoubtedly he remained eighty four days without a fish. The first forty days he was accompanied with a boy. The boy’s parents condemned him to be bad luck and transferred the boy to an other lucky boat. The old man made him a true disciple and a great part of his courage. The boy never thought him stranger but his own like soul and body. The boy always made efforts to diminish his troubles by sweeping away the thorns from his life. Apart from it, the other fisher men criticized him and some one sent him a gift, proving him to be ill-fated and weak. Such tearing remarks lacerated his conviction and encouraged him to follow reality by performing a great heroic deed with the help of experience and matchless skill. He himself says that eighty fifth day would be Lucky for him. He knows that such long bad luck might be changed into fortune.

Fortune comes after bitter bewilderments. It, first of all, takes the trial of different qualities existed into the old man. When a person defeats difficulties, he is proclaimed successful. After that he is entitled to enjoy the fruit that is earned by him. So the old man has to earn immortal honor and for that he has to be successful in his examination. That’s why he makes his mind and moves the boat to the sea with a great determination. In shallow dark, he hears the sounds of other boats to a little distance. May be, they did not go far away. His aim is to fight against the bad luck.

So for its sake, he is ready to be destroyed. Before his will, all the furious objects of the sea are weak and even the sea loses its cruelty and looks him his friend. He moved over that part of the sea which was called the great wall. It was seven hundred fathoms deep. The old man is quite alone but not disappointed. On the way, he talks with birds, fish and the other objects. From his activities, the readers find him sanguine. His coming on such distance means to perform something unusual. In his mind there was the hunting of Marlin. So Santiago’s role is to pursue the great marlin that’s what he was born for. The marlin’s role is to live in the deepest parts of the sea and escape the pursuit of man.

The role of chance or destiny is very dominant that stands him on such place where he finds himself alone and his alternate is nothing else but either to perform adventure or die but not to yield. When a person takes a decision, all the objects of nature not only help him but also add a great enthusiasm and assistance to his commitment. Such high spirit makes him stronger and brings him on such place where luck seems trivial and little and every trick is vain and makes itself defeated.

He moves for a great prey with weak weapons and strong wishes. The old man is alone in the ocean on his boat with weak weapons but with a bright hope. By watching the circling bird, he adds that the bird is a great help and through birds, one can know the position of fish. He held the lines in his right hand and there came a soft pull, neither solid nor heavy. So he knew it was a Marlin that was eating the sardines one hundred fathom down. Now he wanted to run him through his fingers without feeling him any tension. By feeling a very hard pull, he presumed the fish was huge. The fish moved steadily and slowly on the water. The old man wishes the support of the boy. It is his weak point but he consoles himself and makes it as the base of courage and high spirit for making a war against the Marlin. The fish went to the north west all the night.

Before the day light, the fish pulled him down on his face and made a cut below his eye. The blood ran down his cheek a little way and dried. He said to the fish that he would stay with him till death. From such mood, it is quite clear that he is not angry with the fish but he loves him and is ready to die but not to surrender. Such thought assures the readers of his strength, experience and determination and before him any thing is trivial. The fish was still moving slowly and steadily. His head and back were dark purple and he was two feet longer than the skiff. Now his endeavor was to slow the fish with a steady pressure; otherwise he will take out all the lines and break them. He shifted the lines to his left hand which was safe. He call his hero who had defeated Negro. Such devotion empowers him more and makes him brave and self dependent. So he applies all his pains to stop the fish and is succeeded in his mission. At last the fish became slow and rose out the water. The old man threw the harpoon through the shoulders and tied him with the boat.

The fish was not so dangerous as Shark. Besides, he did not make him furious. Sometimes the old man wished to offer him food and called him brother. His actual war starts with the sharks. Now the chance comes into the figure of sharks for taking revenge of his defeat. The defeated chance comes with great power and wrath to defeat him or label him to be bad luck. With the old man we find the support of two things. One is his skill and experience and the other is he proved himself to be lucky by defeating bad luck in form of a huge fish. Now his power is double and he is a great warrior.

His battle with shark fishes evinces his inner voice that adds preference to destruction or death but not to defeat. Through death or doom, ones name never dies but dies by defeat for ever.A shark attacks with open mouth and takes away forty pounds from the fish. The old man kills it. Now he utters the words that man is not made for defeat and further says that a man can be destroyed but can not be defeated. It is his invincible spirit. The more sharks came and hit the fish. The old man fought them skillfully, all his weapons broke and he became helpless physically. Such furious attacks of sharks made him critically wounded and the fish was no more but a huge skeleton was saved as the symbol of success for him and the symbol of defeat for destiny or chance. The half dead person came on the harbor. On the next day, the fisher men gathered and were sorry to see the skeleton of such big fish, measured more than eighteen feet long. Their words, too, made him more experienced and undefeated.

Destiny destroyed him but could not defeat him. The skeleton that is supposed to be useless, actually it is not. When the fisher men saw it, they became very surprised and added more respect and glory to the old man. One thing infuriates the readers that Santiago is the reflection of Hemingway who fought against the chance and defeated. He faced hardships of life and at last walked out a successful fisher man, where as Hemingway accepted the defeat of destiny having committed suicide. Such action diminishes the importance of his work,’ The old man and sea.’

Source by Ali Asghar Joyo


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