The clear tone and style Hemingway employs often through his writing is demonstrated in his memoir, A Moveable Feast. About his years in Paris in the 1920’s as a writer, it is clear that with this underlying theme of in a way, a autobiography, that there would be a very casual feel to the writing. Hemingway’s writing style can be seen as very conversational, as he keeps his use of words and grammar to an easily-understood level. One specific element of his work that stood out to me was his inclusion of quoted conversations very often in the memoir; these conversations of quotes would sometimes continue for pages, supporting the previous idea of a very direct and conversational tone employed throughout the memoir. With this in mind, Hemingway’s direct use of language and time causes the work to flee from a strong example of form following content. One chapter in which both Hemingway’s casual and direct tone as well as his continuous quoting of conversations is demonstrated in is With Pascin at the Dôme. A casual conversation goes on with Hemingway, Pascin, and the two model sisters for pages in this chapter:
“‘You have to go?’
‘Have to and want to.’
‘Go on then’...” (Hemingway 109).
This comfortable writing style makes the literature very easy to read and digest. Besides his large usage of quotes, Hemingway’s bias shines through often in many chapters. One moment stood out to me in Ezra Pound and His Bel Espirit when Hemingway first encounters Wyndham Lewis. Hemingway’s very strong opinions are very notable here and alter the opinion of a reader, as bias often does: “Lewis did not show evil; he just looked nasty” (Hemingway 115). Hemingway’s constant repetition of Lewis’s “nastiness” exemplifies the very prominent element of bias Hemingway uses in his memoir.
Overall, I think we read this book as a part of our AP Language study to get a peer into the daily life of one of history’s greatest writers and the environment he wrote in. It gives you a great perspective on the influences he had of other writers like Ezra Pound and Stein, and helps us further understand how they affected his writing and style. The text does not necessarily present any problems to solve as there is not a concrete plot (as it is a memoir), but readers are still required to make connections between the different authors Hemingway encounters and how his relationships affect him as a person and writer.