THE WORLD OF ENGLISH Thursday, 25.02.2021, 02:12
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I guess the beginning of the story is quite usual and perhaps even banal. The son wants to watch his father brings new life into the world. He is a young boy who helps his father. But on the other hand, despite the fact that there is only pain and violence in life, from the author point of view, I guess we are clearly shown, that the father takes care of his son and that he wants to preserve him from death. We see that the husband of the woman, who gave birth to the child couldn’t stand the pain and screams of the woman. And I guess the most important scene of the play is when the son asks whether everybody kills himself or not. And the father answers that not everybody as if he wants to prove his son that he’ll never die.

The atmosphere in the story is quite unpleasant, dull, dark and scaring. But to my mind the author gives a small hope to everybody in Indian Camp. The life is cruel and everybody should face all these problems. But the story begins quite nice. The doctor goes to help the woman to give birth to a child. So this symbolizes something great and the most important in life. But then again – the screams and pain of the woman, the death of the husband. So this is reality.

During the whole story the emotions of the boy changed greatly. At the beginning of the story the boy is ready to help his father. He is very happy because he will be able to take part in his father’s work. But then he sees the woman who suffers very much, he understands that even  giving birth that is usually treated as the happiest event, can be dirty and painful. But then he also sees the corpse of the husband. And it’s clear that the boy feels disgusted, depressed and sick, because he can’t stand the smell, the action; he can’t look at the blood and the corpse. He just can’t be in this room; as if he went out he would be in another world without horror and pain. But maybe in this room the author just concentrated only the worst things that can happen to people. And the author tries to prove that sadness never leaves people. Maybe he exaggerates a bit, but I should agree just with one thing for sure that nobody can escape this cruel reality.

(by Luck)

I won't say much about this story. I don't understand why it is worth discussing. Didn't like it at all.
So... I'd like to speak about the plot a little bit. As everybody knows, the doctor comes to help some Indian woman give birth to a child. But although this story is about a childbirth, it focuses on the experience of the doctor rather than the woman. Nearly nothing is said about the feelings and emotions of the woman. And, on the contrary, the story focuses on the doctor's emotions and actions. They are described in detail. What can it possibly mean?! Maybe, the author wanted to show strength, masculinity. But if it is so, why did the father of  the newborn child commit a suicide? Is it the doctor's antipode? Or is this character used to show us that men sometimes behave in a "feminine" way? I don't understand it. But... If I were to determine the role of this character in the story, I would say that he balances it. The child has been born, his father has died. Life has both sides.
That's all. I know it's too short but I think I've said enough to express my point of view. 

(by Asya)

I absolutely agree that there is no peace in the stories, as it is said in our lesson plan. When I read the first part of the story ‘Indian camp’ I hoped that everything would be all right, the child would be born, the new life would appear. I was absolutely shocked with the end of the story. But Hemingway is not an optimistic writer; I don’t know why I expected a ‘happy end’. So, the author shows us the reality of life, but this reality is quite severe – there is no absolute happiness. The whole atmosphere is depressing: darkness, mist, cold. Sometimes Hemingway gives us positive feelings, e.g. Nick’s father felt exalted after the delivery ‘as a football player after a game’. The child was born, the woman stopped suffering from the awful pain, but the next moment we see a suicide of her husband, who couldn’t bear her misery. And all post-operative exhilaration of the father is gone together with our optimistic mood. I think that the main idea of the story is the whole cycle of life and death. The pains of life become clear to Nick for the first time.

(by Ayayulia)

A small boy who is out of touch with harsh reality becomes a witness of the two greatest secrets of the world – Life and Death... His understanding, his reaction – these are the very things the author tries to draw our attention to. The moment when a person first gets acquainted with pain, suffering and death is a crucial point in one's nature that has certain dramatic impact on one's personality and character. The consciousness of people's mortality can determine the following being changing the whole system of values and moral norms. And how does this little boy Nick come across death for the first time in his life? He sees that the man commits suicide just after his child's birth. Life and Death go hand in hand, they exist in their dialectal unity. Little Nick faces them both and their union creates his own attitude towards these phenomena. He comprehends that Life begins with throes, with screams and cries, and Death comes quietly, unexpectedly appearing in the next room... And it becomes difficult for Nick to understand what makes people suffer most. But this discovery hasn't changed Nick's life-vision. The initial meeting with Life and Death turned out to be untroubled. May be, that's why his questions are so commonplace – he just asks and doesn't take the answers to heart. As his father says, "it's pretty easy”. Besides, little Nick is quite sure that he "would never die”. Well, one day this little boy will understand the real value of Life and tragedy of Death. But not today...

(by Rina)

«Indian Camp» is one of the stories written by E. Hemingway. The story tells us about young Nick. He is an ordinary boy. His father is a doctor. I can’t say that this story is happy.

            Nick comes across two great sacraments: the beginning of a new life and death. Unfortunately, both these processes are not normal. An Indian woman is having a baby only with the help of the cesarean operation. Nick’s father helps poor mother to give the birth to her child. At same time the Indian woman’s husband commits a suicide. Nick becomes a happenstance witness of all these actions.

Firstly, the boy is very interested in what his father is going to do. But then Nick can’t stand what he sees. The whole situation is disgusting. The room where all the characters are is dark and dirty. A crying newborn, a dead Indian, his exhausted wife, blood everywhere make the atmosphere tensive and oppressive.

When Nick is coming home with his father he asks some simple questions about life and death. Nick’s father answers in a very simple way. So we understand that there is no drama in the story. It’s just a real life situation and a little boy who wants to learn real life. Nick has just been the looker of the beginning of a new life and death, and now he wants to know more about it. After the conversation with the father Nick thinks he will never die. I think it’s natural for a young dreaming boy. In our childhood we all think that we’ll never come across the problems other people have. But still young Nick continues to learn this new cruel, but real world.

(by Seagull)


Indian Camp is one of those stories that involve a rich metaphorical meaning. This short story tells us about the childhood of Nick Adams and particularly about the event that stuck into his memory all right. Nick with his father goes to the Indian camp to help the young girl to give birth to a child. In the end Nick sees the girl’s husband commit suicide because of his wife’s tortures.  This experience seems to have made a great impression on Nick (and naturally on Hemingway himself). The thing that attracts reader’s attention is the contrast between the surrounding world and the hut where Nick’s father delivered the child. We almost hear every sound of the inner world  – the slapping of oars, the birds singing, the Indians rustling around.  Nick is calmed down by the nature itself, by its tranquility and serenity. The inner world is the world of life. The hut is the world of death and torments. Naturally the hut is just a part of this world and a very small part. It’ll be a snap for Nick to get rid of that unpleasant feeling after seeing the Indian’s corpse. The nature heels Nick and protects from all the stresses. So, the mainstream idea of the story consists in the fact that death and pain are nothing in comparison with life. Life is a much bigger and more universal thing.  Should I be a director of the screen version of the story, I would emphasize this contrast. The scenes in the hut would be shot in a steady-cam manner with monochrome in order to underline the main difference. All the other should be understood by the audience. All in all the Hemingway’s manner to carefully conceal the idea from the readers takes place here as well. Still everyone may understand the story in his own way.


It is widely known that you should read Hemingway’s works between lines. For me it’s quite hard sometimes to get the real, detailed meaning though the gist is generally quite clear. My acquaintance with Hemingway’s stories began with Indian Camp, and after reading other short stories by this author, I still admit this was the most slashing, dramatic and profound sketch of little Nick’s life. Hemingway tends to leave a lot of his ideas unsaid, unexpressed, he just vaguely hints at them. The little boy witnesses the two most considerable events in a human’s life: birth and death. Anyway, they are described from the point of view of an adult, not a child, ant this is a kingpin to the story. We see the events through the perspective of years; we are to predict how it will manifest itself on the boy’s character. Being small and protected, Nick feels his life will never end. Here we come across an eloquent symbol – a circle in the water, a representation of the line that has no end and no beginning. This is how little Nick perceives life. The air is chill, but the water warms up Nick’s hand and he knows nothing bad will ever happen. Even when asking questions, he is firm in his belief that such awful things won’t happen to him.

Hemingway tries to make us view our life from various angles, to bring us to the point that we are mortal but the life cognition is eternal.

(by MissJane)

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