In life, surely we will inevitably fail and lose faith in life, but it is important that we know how to stand up after those stumbles. “Being defeated is a temporary state, giving up is a permanent defeat.” That’s what I learned after reading ” The Old Man and the Sea ” by American writer – Hemingway.
“The Old Man and the Sea” has the English name “The Old Man san the Sea”, this is considered Hemingway‘s most successful novel, the work has been honored to receive many awards such as the Pulitzer Prize in 2015. 1953, Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. This work was written by Hemingway in 1951 in Cuba and after only one year was published and received the love of many readers around the world.
The content of “The Old Man and the Sea” is the story about the 3 days 2 night sailing trip of the main character named Santigo on the vast ocean. Santigo is an old fisherman who loves nature and loves his job. His life was very poor and miserable with just a small boat, so it was difficult for him to catch big fish. After many failed sailings, he was still undaunted and this time he decided to make a big catch. And sure enough, as he intended, he defeated a proud and beautiful giant swordfish. The swordfish is too strong while the old man is too old and weak. But with his spirit of determination, he did not give up. After 3 days of struggling, he had “collected all his strength, plus the new strength the old man had just put on, he stuck his nose into the fish’s side, right behind the visor on his side, which was then raised to the level of the old man’s chest. Feeling the steel blade had dug into its flesh, the old man crouched down, exerting all the strength of his body to press harder and deeper. The old man caught the fish, conquered its power, and conquered the ocean.
However, luck was not on his side, in the process of bringing the swordfish to the shore, he was suddenly caught by the sharks. He tried his best to fight the sharks, but by the time he got to the shore, the big and fat swordfish had only a skeleton left.
” The Old Man and the Sea ” is just a short novel with 123 pages, but it really left readers with many emotions, thoughts, and many meaningful lessons. The title alone makes readers impressed and curious. Why not the old man and the sharks? or the old man and the swordfish? but the old man and the sea? It is no coincidence that Hemingway gives such a title that here he wants to compare, want to affirm that man can be equal to nature, but not really small. With his strong will and determination, man can conquer and master all things.
With his unique artistic pen, Hemingway portrayed the image of the character Old Santigo with the image of a very close and simple fisherman with an old look, sunburned skin, and old scars only. Only the eyes are still sharp. His eyes were always filled with hope and optimism. After his failed trips, his hope never faltered but grew stronger. No matter how badly the sea treated him, he still did not blame the sea, but on the contrary, he loved it as passionately as a woman.
“Every day is a new day. Better luck. But I like accuracy. When my luck comes, I’ll be ready.” Those were the autobiographical words of old Santigo.
The details and events in ” The Old Man and the Sea “help us to see that old Santigo’s thinking is very intelligent and positive. Thanks to that, we also understand more that to be successful, we have to think differently. Success is a long process of our patience, perseverance, and hard work, not momentary luck every day or two. In addition, the author also wants to remind readers that in life as well as at work, we should not be sloppy and lazy because if so, there will never be good results.
I understand that old Santigo has used his abilities to the fullest and is always looking for ways to catch the fish just like we all have to rise to find our dreams and aspirations in life. The image of the swordfish with its brave beauty, always daring to face the dangers in this work is a symbol of the dreams and aspirations of each person who wants to rise up.
The road to success, to glory, has never been easy for old Santigo, in the process of fighting the swordfish there was a time when he was tired, he wanted to rest but no he did not give up, “I can endure without sleep,” he thought to himself. But that’s just too dangerous. The old man began to crawl toward the stern of the boat, being careful not to tug at the rope. “Perhaps he’s asleep, too,” he thought. But I don’t want it to rest, it has to drag until it dies” – Santigo’s words have taught us a very profound and meaningful lesson that should not be lazy or too easy with ourselves, always take advantage of the opportunity because maybe the opportunity will be lost, then we will really regret it.
The highlight before the end of the story is the image of the skeleton of the swordfish. After 3 days and 2 nights of fatigue, fighting with many difficulties, he brought back the giant swordfish skeleton. So our question here is whether he failed or succeeded after this journey. Many people think that he failed because the swordfish was eaten by the sharks. But no, Old Santigo was really successful, in everyone, the first success was that he was able to win over himself and catch a big swordfish after many failures still not being discouraged. The second success was that he was able to defeat the herd of “the fierce sea gods” and landed safely. Old Santigo is a very ordinary person but has extraordinary energy. An old man who conquered endless nature without flinching.
In addition, in the work there is a group of ferocious sharks, that are about to attack the swordfish – the only result after the trip of old Santigo, this is also a way that Hemingway wants to criticize, mocking those who are jealous, envious of other people’s success and always competing for the good results of others while it is a long and arduous process for them.
” The Old Man and the Sea ” was described by Hemingway in a truthful, vivid, very attractive, captivating detail that makes anyone who reads the book can’t take their eyes off. The book has brought lessons and life philosophies that are very familiar, close and profound, and full of education that we sometimes forget in life.
The journey to find and conquer each of our dreams will be extremely difficult and arduous, but let’s be like old man Santigo, always persevere, be optimistic, and have faith and hope in the most difficult times. Do not hesitate to face the difficulties and challenges in your life! Life is only lived once, we must live it so that we will not regret the unfinished plans of our youth when we grow old. Happy reading!
REVIEW “OLD MAN AND THE SEA”: BOOKS THAT GIVE YOU HOPE
The story of a Cuban fisherman with only hope to sustain his austere life evokes the basic truths of life.
Dreamers, never see the coming tides. But who can blame them? It is better to paddle across an ocean of hope than to swim in a sea of despair. No matter what’s underneath: a world without dreamers is a nightmare.
Santiago, the old man in Ernest Hemingway’s 1952 novel, is a dreamer. But with age, his dreams have changed, trampled and worn down by decades of fishing in Stream Bay: His dreamy mind is no longer focused on life’s major milestones but instead it’s about a childhood memory: lions playing on an African beach. “Why are the lions the only thing left over?” he wondered.
Santiago is a simple man. Fishing is his life, and baseball and the Gran Ligas are his domain. A New York delinquent, “The Great DiMaggio” was his earthly god. But gradually, the sea turned cruel, and the old man endured 84 days without catching a single fish. He believes in luck but not superstition. He is devout but not religious, wary of religion even though he can be shaken. When the time is right, when hope carries the bait under the deep blue sea, Santiago silently prays that he will not only have the strength but also the courage to bring the reward back to the land: “I will read ten times the Hail Mary and ten times the Hail Mary if I should catch this fish, and I promise to make a pilgrimage to the Virgin de Cobre if I catch it. It’s a promise.”
Given the village’s trade, “the worst form of bad luck”, his body was barren and rough from years of labor but with those “joyful and invincible” blue eyes. , he began day 85 since his last sailing and sailed out, away from deep wells with no harvest, toward “schools of albacore bonita, where he could earn more. : “My big fish must be somewhere.”
He was right. But then, the prey takes the bait and the real challenge begins. Day after day, with little or no sleep, he lost his way in time and the algae in the Sargasso Sea passed. Having to eat raw fish to maintain his strength, and gradually demoralizing the blue marlin, Santiago regrets his bad plan: “I will never board a boat without salt or lemon.” But then his words were associated with the implication that he would set sail again.
He would win the battle but lose the reward, and despair pushed him beyond the limits of reality. He lamented the demise of his daring but unyielding dream: “A man can be destroyed but cannot be defeated.”
As I was rereading this fictional story, the news came that an elderly priest had been murdered at the altar in Normandy, where he was presiding over Mass. After the terror subsided, I turned to Hemingway again for solace. Words have a source of power that violence cannot destroy. Praying in a church or shouting in a storm, words are a lifelong companion. And Hemingway’s words, in this flimsy book, are as influential, steady, and gentle as a lighthouse.
The Old Man and the Sea is a beautiful story, filled with the saltiness of the sea, sweat, fish bait, and beer on the Havana coast. It speaks to a fundamental truth about humanity: in a world full of turmoil, from our first breath to our desires, through both trivial and profound victories and pitfalls, in the end, What keeps us alive is hope.