13. Various Themes of the Novel
Lessons of Hemingway
The Old Man and the Sea 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. Santiago proves the theme of the novel that what a man can do and what a man can endure. Santiago fights bravely against marlin and sharks. The old man loses the battle but with dignity, which is also known as moral victory.
The second theme is that a lonely man surrounded by dangers and problems desires to have company and likes to say prayer. In old age this need is the greater. Santiago is sad in his loneliness. When Santiago feels tired during his struggle against marlin he says, I wish the boy was here. No one should be alone in his old age. Santiago enjoys the company of birds, fish, sea and stars. His dreams and memories also serve him as companions in loneliness.
The third theme is that struggle and effort are more important than success or achievement. 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. The Old man also says, I will show him what a man can do and what a man endures. 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. As old man says, I will fight them until I die. (273)

14. The Character Sketch of Manolin
Relationship between Manolin And The Old Man
Q: 14 What is the symbolic significance of Santiago Manoline relationship
Or Describe Santiago Manoline relationship as parable of youth and old age.
Or I wish I had the boy. Explain or Write down the character and role of Manoline in the old Man and the Sea. 2000
Or Give significance of Manoline? 2002
Or How would you describe Santiago’s relationship with the boy? 2004-II, 2005-I
Or Explain the relationship of Santiago Manoline. 2005
Or How does Manoline express his love for the old man? 2008-II Sup

Manolin, the boy, has been with Santiago since he was only five years old. He is very much devoted to Santiago and serves him like a son serving his father. They are joined by friendship, love and faith. Manolin serves the old man with love and shows him respect. The boy also tells him that he has to learn a lot from him.
Santiago cannot catch even a single fish for eighty four days. In the first forty days Manolin remains with him but after that he leaves the old man at the orders of his parents. He tells the old man, it is papa made me leave. I am a boy and I must obey him. Manolin continues to serve the old man in some other way. He helps Santiago in his fishing preparations, brings him small fish for catching bigger fish, carries the fishing gear and other things to his skiff, and brings him coffee and beer from the restaurant. He says, “I can learn and you can teach me everything.” The boy keeps him alive as he is the symbol of Santiago’s youthful strength. Manolin remains in the ideas and feelings of the old man. During fight, he often says, “I wish I had the boy”. He is keenly concerned about the old man and cares for his comfort and rest. He is Santiago’s only companion and friend in the old age. He is greatly worried at his weakness and fatigue. On seeing his wounded hands he begins to cry, brings food and coffee for him. He declares, Now we fish together again. He also tells the other fishermen that he is sleeping and they should not disturb him. So, Manolin is shown as obedient, respectful and sincerely devoted apprentice of the old man. 297


When the voyage begins, we are told that old man knew he was going far out and that he left the smell of the land behind. On the sea there was loneliness. He was an old man who fished alone in a stiff. On the sea he talks to himself aloud on many occasions and in various contexts. This is the only way for him to fight the complete silence around him. He wants to get confidence that he is not alone. All this strength and determination come from inside; even the thoughts of the boy and the African lions which partly sustain his strength and courage pertain to his inner subjective life. He confronts the marlin all by himself; gradually he begins to respect and love his adversary calling it friend and brother even though he is determined to kill it. The entire experience of the old man spread over two days which is rich in significance and meaning. This experience may symbolically be treated as life in miniature. The old man has truly lived, and his experience is comprehensive enough to convey the spiritual sufficiency of what he has been through. He does not allow his loneliness to hamper his path. Sea with its loneliness has taught him to fight against adverse circumstances. (215)