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Men Without Women

by Ernest Hemingway, Annemari Horschitz-Horst

Other authors: Ernest Hemingway

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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1,4382210,732 (3.65)29
CLASSIC SHORT STORIES FROM THE MASTER OF AMERICAN FICTION First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would occupy his later works: the casualties of war, the often uneasy relationship between men and women, sport and sportsmanship. In "Banal Story," Hemingway offers a lasting tribute to the famed matador Maera. "In Another Country" tells of an Italian major recovering from war wounds as he mourns the untimely death of his wife. "The Killers" is the hard-edged story about two Chicago gunmen and their potential victim. Nick Adams makes an appearance in "Ten Indians," in which he is presumably betrayed by his Indian girlfriend, Prudence. And "Hills Like White Elephants" is a young couple's subtle, heartwrenching discussion of abortion. Pared down, gritty, and subtly expressive, these stories show the young Hemingway emerging as America's finest short story writer.… (more)
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English (19)  Hindi (1)  Dutch (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (22)
Showing 1-5 of 19 (next | show all)
These 14 short stories from Ernest Hemingway, first published collectively in 1927, are not entirely devoid of women, but they certainly are bent towards the masculine. There is a certain rugged pathos to stories about an aging bullfighter (“The Undefeated”), a boxer who decides to throw a fight (“Fifty Grand”), soldiers maimed in WW1 (“In Another Country”), a drug addict (“A Pursuit Race”), and hitmen terrorizing a diner while waiting for their target (“The Killers”, my overall favorite). Hemingway gets in a direct critique of Mussolini and the fascists effect on Italy (“Che Ti Dice La Patria?”), and more subtly given the era, also touches on homosexuality (“A Simple Enquiry”) and abortion (“Hills Like White Elephants”).

As with his other work, there is great economy with language, and I liked how what some of the stories were really trying to say required thought and interpretation. There are times when Hemingway provides contrasts without directly linking things, such as that between characters thinking of “Them Indians” as drunken trouble-makers, and a boy secretly loving one of them (“Ten Indians”). In another story, characters view peasants as “beasts,” whereas a couple of skiers had a carefree winter while a poor peasant was snowed in with his wife’s corpse in a shed (“An Alpine Idyll”). In a third, we get the lightweight reporting of a magazine on various topics which also seems like empty chatter, followed by the gravitas of a dying bullfighter known for his courage (“Banal Story”).

Overall, I don’t think there are any masterpieces here, but the quality level is uniformly high, and it’s worth reading. ( )
1 vote gbill | May 15, 2022 |
The short-story compilation called "Men Without Women" is one of Hemingway's earlier collections of short stories. These stories cover most things that were going on at that time in Hemingway's life. Covered in the stories, are things like bull-fighting, boxing, war, relationships between men and women and even a story about Chicago gangsters. There are 14 stories in this collection. Whenever I read a collection of short stories I like to pick my favourite of the bunch. Even though I don't like bullfighting and don't understand it, Hemingway's tribute to famous matador Maera, is the story that I liked the most. In his usual spare writing style, Hemingway describes what it must have been like for a famous and beloved matador to realize that he is too old to fight anymore. It's all he knows, so he signs up for a lesser fight, fully understanding in his heart that this will be his last. He does the best he can, and when the inevitable happens, he accepts the fate that he chose for himself. Hemingway says so much in so few words, but he always get his message across by the end of each story. My journey of wading through all of Hemingway's works is proceeding nicely with the addition of this book. I look forward to the next book from Hemingway's impressive backlist. ( )
  Romonko | Feb 11, 2022 |
I truly do not understand this book, definitely not my cup of tea. By chapter 6, I've given it up.

Here's my full review:
http://www.sholee.net/2016/11/mpov-men-without-women.html
  Sholee | Sep 9, 2021 |
This was my first introduction to Hemingway’s writing, so it took some time to get used to his masculine characters (or, misogynistic as we’d interpret it now). It also didn’t help that the first story, The Undefeated was my least favourite story of the bunch, but after that it got so much better. I finally got to read and analyse classics like Hills Like White Elephants, A Simple Enquiry and The Killers.

What I like about Hemingway’s short stories is the simplicity on the surface. At first I didn’t understand what message he was trying to convey, but once you’re able to look past the subtleties, Hemingway’s talent shows through. Literature in its most interesting form is when it leaves you with more questions than answers, and Hemingway excels at doing exactly that. I think I’ll come to appreciate these short stories when I read them more often and that prospect excites me. ( )
  frtyfour | Jun 16, 2020 |
I read this collection of 14 short stories in part to compare it to Haruki Murakami's recent collection that borrowed the title. These are indeed primarily stories of men without women. I can see even a few bits to compare, probably coincidental, such as the story of the boxer in '50 Grand' who is off training and misses his wife every day and writes her letters. I enjoyed reading this, but this is not the best Hemingway and some of the stories are just little slips of things that didn't grab me. Still, it is Hemingway. There are enough good ones, thought provoking vignettes, in here to put this at the high end of an OK read so I'm giving this 3 1/2 stars.

Sometimes when I read Hem's stories I feel like a little kid again listening to my grandpa tell stories. ( )
  RBeffa | Nov 30, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 19 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hemingway, Ernestprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Horschitz-Horst, Annemarimain authorall editionsconfirmed
Hemingway, Ernestsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Eggink, ClaraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Manuel Garcia climbed the stairs to Don Miguel Retana's office.
(THE UNDEFEATED).
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CLASSIC SHORT STORIES FROM THE MASTER OF AMERICAN FICTION First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would occupy his later works: the casualties of war, the often uneasy relationship between men and women, sport and sportsmanship. In "Banal Story," Hemingway offers a lasting tribute to the famed matador Maera. "In Another Country" tells of an Italian major recovering from war wounds as he mourns the untimely death of his wife. "The Killers" is the hard-edged story about two Chicago gunmen and their potential victim. Nick Adams makes an appearance in "Ten Indians," in which he is presumably betrayed by his Indian girlfriend, Prudence. And "Hills Like White Elephants" is a young couple's subtle, heartwrenching discussion of abortion. Pared down, gritty, and subtly expressive, these stories show the young Hemingway emerging as America's finest short story writer.

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