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Special word analysis

To make the story more profound, Hemingway use special word to indicate double meaning which call

Puns. The word “white” in paragraph one suggest lots of meaning, this arrangement show author‟s specialpurpose. To describe a sick person‟s face, many writers may use “pale” to indicate the person is very


weakness and lack of energy. However, in this story, author act out of normal thought, “white” on the oneside suggest the boy‟s face color and compare to dark color under his eyes; on the other hand, “white” alsosuggest pure, naïve, immaculate; just the same personality of that nine years old boy. Due to his “white”

personality, he can face death in undaunted way, straightly stair at the foot of his bed where Azrael comesfrom. Another special word

is “downstairs” which appears twice, one is the father‟s action, walking from second

flour to first flour; the other is direction adverbial modifier.

1. “But when I came downstairs he was dressed,”


2. “Downstairs, the doctor left three different m

edicines in different colored capsules with instructions for

giving them.”


In the first quotation, “downstairs” represent the location where their first talk, from the father‟s bedroomto downstairs, the boy “walked slowly as though it ached to move”,

but sill with tough willpower to walk thatalso indicate his great endurance. Besides, the story must happen in America, because many bourgeoisieslive in a house of two flours.

In the second quotation, the boy is docile and compliant, he seems don‟t k

now his temperature for doctor

told his father in downstairs, the boy fought for illness by himself, that‟s the main hint for wholemisunderstanding, if doctor said diagnose on the upstairs, there is no story to praise the boy‟s stoic and


Sentences type

According to the dialog features, most of sentences types are declarative and interrogative, in the frontal

passage, father asks his son‟s feeling and son answer; all sentences are short questions and answers. The

shorter the sentence, the more emotional it represent. Hemingway purposely arrange dialog withoutparalanguage and ignore sentence which can resolve all the problems.

The following dialogs quotations of “A Day‟s wait” are full of meaning and subtext.

"About what time do you think I'm going to die?" he asked."What?"Just a word, surprise, wondering and unbelievable emotion erupt. Father feels puzzle what his son worry

about and feel so upset at first. Suddenly hearing this irrelevant question, he doesn‟t know how to answer

and want to beg a pardon. In this short question, interrogation mark includes query and shock.

Another one word sentence like” „Oh,‟ he said.‟ Represent all kinds of feeling climb up to his heart:

depression after understand suddenly, delight for surviving, angry for scaring, pride for his brave behavior,

and chagrin for sitting still waiting for death. One word indicate so many meanings, echoing readers‟memory of the boy‟s speech and actions for his stoics and heroism, he face death without moving back an


hurting his father‟s feeling. Laconic words convey abundant meanings and emotions, that‟s the important

feature of dialog from daily life.


All semantic features contribute to the meaning of the text as a whole. Semantic features in article show

the author‟s skills of operating sentences to express his attitude and purpose. In “A Day‟s wait”, Hemingway

use no big semantic unit to describe heroism with great adamancy and silence, therefore even a singlesentence or word can be a text t

hat is appropriately coherent in actual use. Like the “oh” sentence mention

before, which tied to a specific situation (all the misunderstanding resolved), is syntactically complete initself.



Visible cohesions can be found in this short story everywhere, especially in the first type refers totransitional words, showing time, place, and causal relation all relate to the misunderstanding occurrence.

Such transitional words as “but, back, while, after, once, if, finally” etc., to show dis

agree, hesitate, no

intention to tell or no more information to inform. There are two detail description of father‟s action; one isfather speaking to doctor on his son‟s illness, and the other is father go hunting outside which is criticized

by some literature critics.

Father which stand for the narrate point to portrays the doctors‟ explanation and his feeling of the doctor‟sdiagnose. Except their dialog up stairs in the son‟s room, father doesn‟t portray the detail dialog, he first

acts as a third party person; suggest three different colored capsules which seem to cure different

symptoms. However, the word “seemed “in sentence “He seemed to know all about influenza and said

there was nothing to worry about if the fever did not go above one hundred and f

our degrees” show the

limitation of doctor. In other words, the truth medicament to cure the illness is not only the capsules, butalso the grim courage of the son. Hemingway use side language to suggest that the boy has great stoicand heroism to defend i

llness and never draw back. Without his “stare straightly “at death, he will be beat

by influenza, even died because of cowardice.


A paragraph concentrates on one aspect of the total theme. The division of a text into paragraphs helpsbring out a clear of the organization of the thematic development.

Some critics dislike the description of father‟s haunting detail. They consider i

t is a faulty expression inwriting. Actually, this detail description neither follows the story venation nor cause the development of the

story directly, even not relate to father and son‟ s interactional, however, it is great hint to profile the theme


f the story. The first scene of this part is to describe the tough environment outside. It‟s such a cold daythat all the foliage is bared and vanished with ice, the author use “bared” frequently to show that nearly no

plant or people appear in such enviro

nment. How tough and cold outside? The author doesn‟t point outdirectly, using many verbs to show. Verbs like “slipped and slithered, fell, dropping, slide away, frozen”. Thisdetail description echoes the first paragraph,” He came into the room to shut t


windows” and “sitting b


the fire”, all suggest the weather is cold and the son is very care about his parents. However, the father‟s

haunting action has three meaning in accordance with the theme.(1) Firstly, it is a great contrast to the whole text in stylistics.Comparing to the short and brief sentence or dialogs, Hemingway insert a paragraph full of complicate and

subordinate clauses. It‟s no doubt that cause reverse and adjective feeling to readers.

(2)Secondly, cause the feeling of time flies. Father goes out hunting probably at noon, which means theson face death by himself for a whole day, the more quickly time fly his father feel, the slower time pass theson suffer. Therefore, this haunting action is the measure for his father and his son. To highlight th

e son‟s

braveness, tide to the theme closer than we can think.

(3)The most important point the author want to point out indirectly is that son totally inherit his father‟s

character and moral---stoic and facing difficult without cower. At the beginning, father can shoot two in suchslippery ice with great difficulty jumping on the ice-coated mounds of brush. To the nine years old boy,facing death by himself is a superb pressure and serious problem, he unnecessary to deal with in such ayoung age. But, he has done it well and continually stares at it. The similar character two protagonists haveis the main reason why Hemingway inserts this paragraph into the story


“A Day’s Wait” deals with the familiar Hemingway theme of heroic fatalism or fatalistic heroism, namely courage in the face of certain death. It is a testament to Hemingway’s skill and his dedication to this theme that he can make fatalistic heroes out of 9-year-old boys as easily as out of middle-aged has-been prizefighters on the run from gangsters and 76-year-old Spanish war refugees. The tragedy in this story is not, of course, that the hero Schatz is doomed, but that he believes himself to be doomed when he is in fact fine.

Schatz’s heroism is quietly but strikingly demonstrated in his words and actions over his day’s wait. The most dramatic manifestation of Schatz’s heroism is the difference between his demeanor during the day described by the story and his demeanor the next day. The narrator says “He was evidently holding tight onto himself about something” before the father goes out hunting, and when Schatz realizes he will be fine, “The hold over himself relaxed too, finally, and the next day it was very slack and he cried very easily at little things that were of no importance.” The little boy is stoic in the face of what he believes will be certain death; he holds his emotions in with iron self-control all day, and even suggests that his father leave the room if he is distressed to see his son dying. He also forbids anyone to come into his room out of concern for their health, even though by doing so he condemns himself to die alone.

Aside from Schatz’s own behavior, the other element of the story that makes Schatz’s heroism striking is the behavior of his father, which unintentionally worsens Schatz’s mental turmoil. Shortly after Schatz suggests that his father need not stay with him if the spectacle of his son’s death will bother him, the father leaves the house for hours to enjoy himself in the winter sunshine with the family dog, a gun, and a covey of quail. The juxtaposition of the father’s enjoyment with Schatz’s self-controlled, tragic, and solitary stoicism sharpens the reader’s sense of Schatz’s heroism.

Most Hemingway scholars believe the narrator of this story, though unnamed, is actually Nick Adams, Hemingway’s semi-autobiographical character who appears in a series of stories. Hemingway’s official biographer Carlos Baker was the first to make this claim, and the fact that original manuscripts for “Fathers and Sons,” one of Hemingway’s confirmed Nick Adams stories, calls Adams’s boy “Schatz” seems to clinch the mater

The story opens as a father discovers that his 9-year-old boy, Schatz, has a fever. The father sends for the doctor and he diagnoses a mild case of influenza. As long as the fever doesn’t go above 104 degrees, the doctor says, the boy will be fine, and he leaves three different types of medication for the father to administer with instructions for each. Schatz’s temperature is determined to be 102 degrees.

When the doctor leaves, the father reads to Schatz from a book about pirates, but the boy is not paying attention and is staring fixedly at the foot of the bed. His father suggests he try to get some sleep, but Schatz says he would rather be awake. He also says that his father needn’t stay in the room with him if he is bothered. His father says he isn’t bothered, and after giving him his 11 o’clock dose of medication, the father goes outside.

It is a wintry day with sleet frozen onto the countryside, and the father takes the family’s Irish setter out hunting along a frozen creek bed. Both man and dog fall more than once on the ice before they find a covey of quail and kill two. The father, pleased with his exploits, returns to the house.

Upon returning home, he finds that Schatz has refused to let anyone into his room because he doesn’t want anyone else to catch the flu. The father enters anyway and finds the boy still staring at the foot of the bed. He takes Schatz’s temperature and finds it 102, as before. He tells Schatz his temperature is fine, and not to worry. Schatz says he’s not worrying, but he is thinking. When the father gives Schatz his medication, Schatz asks if he thinks the medication will help, and the father answers affirmatively.

After attempting to interest Schatz in the pirate book and failing, the father pauses, whereupon Schatz asks him when the father thinks Schatz will die. It emerges that Schatz has heard at school in France that no one can live with a temperature above 44, so Schatz thinks he is sure to die with a temperature of 102. He has been waiting to die all day.

After the father explains the difference between Fahrenheit and Celsius, Schatz relaxes, letting go of his iron self-control and the next day he allows himself to get upset over little things.

A Day`s Wait is a story written by Nobel Prize winner Ernest Hemingway and did first appear in the Snows of Kilimanjaro in 1933. The story is told by a young boy`s father and are centered around the boy.


The short story mainly focuses on the day of a nine-year old boy called Schatz (a German term for affection), who spend is whole day thinking his dying, which is a result of a misunderstanding between the boy and his father. Schatz has a temperature of 102 degress Fahrenheit and he has heard from soom boys in France the you can`t live with a temperature of forty-four degrees Cellsius. Thinking these two units are the same, he believes his about to die and his father is clueless about the thoughts of his son. Schatz`s true thoughts isn`t revealed until the end of the story, to the fathers great surprise.


I believe that the story is sat to the late og early winter, because of the ground, which where covered with a sleet that had frozen so that it seemed as if all the bushes, the grass, and the bare trees and ground had been varnished with ice. The creek was frozen and a covey of quail was protecting themselves from the cold under a high clay bank.


Short summary:

When Schatz came in to his parents room to close their windows in the morning, his father could see that he was shivering, that is face was white and that he walked slowly, as though it ached to move. When he asked his son whether everything was fine, he told him it was. Schatz was told to go to bed and his father called for a doctor, who confirmed that Schatz in fact was sick. He had influenza and a temperature of 102 degress Fahrenheit. The doctor told father that there was nothing to worry about and left Schatz some medicine to take throughout the whole day.


Schatz spent is day in bed, distant, while his father tried to read to him, without getting any response from Schatz himself. In the end he decide to take the Irish setter for a walk, but when he returned Schatz refused to let him in to he`s room, fearing his father would get what he had. Later Schatz asked his father: “About what time do you think I`m going to die?” and his father aswered: “People don`t die with a fever of one hundred and two. That`s a silly way to talk”. To his father it might have been a silly way to think, but to Schatz himself it was deadly serious. Schatz settle down with this and finally drifted off to sleep, but was very slack and cried easily the day after.


This story had few characters and was mainly centered around Schatz and his father, but it also seems to be others present on soom occasions, which is suggested in soom lines, for examples here: He came in to the room to shut the windows while we were still in bed and.... (it seems there might be a mother present) and here: At the house they said the boy had refused... (it seems to be someone else present in the house while the father is out walking the dog). A doctor aslo drops by to see to Schatz.


Schatz seems to be a quite normal boy of nine, but in this story he behaves serious and very adult, but he`s still a child that can`t understand everything by himself.


The father seems to be atypical father figure, who care enough for his son to read for him. But still he doesn`t understand that his son is very confused and that he needs someone to tell him what`s going on.


The aim or the purpose of this short story is to shed some light on the importance of clear speace and to try to put yourself in the people around you`s position. Also, to understand have easy it is to misunderstand others or for others to misunderstand you. The smallest thing cant be turned in to something much greater, if you aren`t careful.

-Schatz:Schatz is a nine year-old boy who conveys the idea of youth and innocence throughout "A Day's Wait" by Ernest Hemingway. While "sick and miserable," Schatz is also fearful of the thought of his untimely death, a prospect which can be linked to the information provided by the other boys at school in France. (Hemingway, 3). After the doctor reveals to Schatz the fault in his presumption, Schatz returns back to his normal life, crying "very easily at little things that were of no importance. (Hemingway, 3). The dynamics of Schatz's character serve to support both his age and the attributes which he exemplifies.

-The Doctor:A static character by nature, the doctor's personality doesn't ever deviate from what the reader sees to be normal. The doctor provides aid and assistance to the boy by offering medical advice and ensuring that Schatz receives his medicines.

-Papa:As the father of Schatz, this character is tasked with spending time with his son, so long as he remains in his sickly condition. In the beginning of the story, Schatz's dad comforts his son by reading "Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates" aloud to the child. (Hemingway, 1). In addition to reading, Papa tries to ease Schatz's mind by answering questions he may have, or by correcting fault in a previous mindset. After being told that "you can't live with forty-four degrees," Schatz's dad reaffirms his son that "It's like miles and kilometres. You aren't going to die. That's a different thermometer." (Hemingway, 3).

-School Boys from France: Although this character group is seldom mentioned in the text, the boys from the school in France serve to create the driving force behind Schatz's poor state of mental health. After telling Schatz that he couldn't live with even forty-four degrees, he is certain that he will die; after all, he had one hundred and two degrees. This group of characters inadvertently creates conflict in the story by introducing facts that inevitably lead to a misunderstanding.


Date: 2016-01-14; view: 750

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