OLD MAN AND THE SEA

 

11. Fight against the Hostile Nature

 

Q: 11 Santiago is a skilful and humble man pitted against an indifferent universe. Discuss and explain. (P.U.1995/A,Group-l) ;
Or An indifferent universe is represented here by the sea/ocean and the creatures therein. 2010
Or ”’Santiago (the Old Man) is a professional, seasoned and skilful fisherman, pitted against the indifferent or hostile forces of Nature, that is. the sea/ocean and the creatures of the sea. Discuss and explain.
Or The Old Man And the Sea is the story of an old fisherman (Santiago). fighting desperately against Nature or the forces of Nature. Who does win the long run, the Old Man or the forces of Nature? Explain. ‘
Or Hemingway’s mysticism is that he feels one with the fish as part of the grand scheme of nature. Discuss. 2005

Ans. Old Man And The Sea is the story of an old fisherman fighting desperately against the forces of nature. It ends on a note of pathos. Hemingway feels the fish as a part of the grand scheme of nature. He seems to be pessimistic in this way that nature does not like to bestow her gifts on man freely and generously. Man has to use his intelligence, courage and skill to fight against the forces of nature. Santiago is a professional, seasoned and skilful fisherman, pitted against the indifferent or hostile forces of Nature, that is, the sea and the creatures of the sea. Santiago wishes luck, but he, at the same time, believes in the skill and techniques (methods) of fishing.
After his victory over the marlin, he fights with the more dangerous sharks, very courageously and boldly. Being extremely exhausted owing to his prolonged struggle with the marlin, he fails to defeat the sharks. He loses the marlin. He is beaten and destroyed in the cruel hands of nature, but he is not prepared to accept his defeat by the sharks, who are one of the indifferent and violent forces of Nature or universe. He laments to go out far in the sea. He says; “I am sorry that I went to far out, I ruined as both.” He believes that man is helpless before nature. He says, “Forces of nature conspire to destroy the peace and happiness of man’. 243
12. Moral Victory

Q: 12 What a man can do and what a man can endure. Explain with reference to The Old Man and The Sea.
Or What lesson Hemingway wants to teach as?
Or What do you mean by moral victory?
Or Describe Santiago’s moral victory against the forces of nature.
The Old Man And The Sea is the story of an old fisherman fighting desperately against the forces of nature. The novel shows that man’s life is a struggle against powerful forces of nature and in this struggle man is always defeated. A man may be defeated, but he must not accept defeat. He must be determined and confident during his fight against life. This is what Hemingway wants to teach us. Life is a struggle against the hostile forces of nature and life. If we cannot finish or defeat these difficulties or hostile forces, we should go fighting against them. Santiago fights bravely against marlin. After his victory over the marlin, he fights with the more dangerous sharks, very courageously and boldly and proves that a man can be destroyed but not defeated. He also proves what a man can do and what a man can endure. He says I will fight them until I die. He is not ready to accept defeat. The old man says;
They beat me, Manolin
They truly beat me.
The boy replies, He did not beat you. Not the fish.
The old man is defeated physically but he wins morally. He wins a moral victory even if he is defeated by fierce natural forces. Though certainly it is a battle on which defeat of man is inevitable. The old man loses the battle but with dignity, which is also known as moral victory. (240)