Iceberg Theory

The Iceberg Theory (also known as the "theory of omission") is the writing style of American writer Ernest Hemingway. Hemingway is best known for works such as The Sun Also Rises, A Farewell to Arms, and The Old Man and the Sea. Hemingway began his writing career as a journalist and in the 1920s, while living in Paris, worked as foreign correspondent for the Toronto Star. As a journalist he learned to focus only on events being reported, and to omit superfluous and extraneous matter. When he became a writer of short stories, he learned to write a surface story in which he omitted or hinted at the point of the story. Hemingway believed the true meaning of a piece of writing should not be evident from the surface story because the crux of the story lies below the surface. Critics such as Jackson Benson claim his iceberg theory, or theory of omission, in combination with his distinctive clarity of writing, functioned as a means to distance himself from the characters he created.

Read more about Iceberg TheoryBackground, Definition, Early Fiction and Short Stories, Novels, Legacy

Other articles related to "iceberg theory, theory":

Big Two-Hearted River - Style - Iceberg Theory
... The technique is called the iceberg theory as Baker describes it, the hard facts float above water while the supporting structure, including the ... —Ernest Hemingway in Death in the Afternoon The iceberg theory has been described as the "theory of omission" ... scholar Joseph Flora believes that in "Big Two-Hearted River" the concept of the iceberg theory is more evident than in any other piece written by Hemingway ...
Ernest Hemingway - Writing Style
... more than the truth." Hemingway called his style the iceberg theory the facts float above water the supporting structure and symbolism operate out of sight ... The concept of the iceberg theory is sometimes referred to as the "theory of omission." Hemingway believed the writer could describe one thing (such as Nick Adams fishing in "The Big Two-Hearted ... His iceberg theory of omission is the foundation on which he builds ...

Famous quotes containing the words theory and/or iceberg:

    It makes no sense to say what the objects of a theory are,
    beyond saying how to interpret or reinterpret that theory in another.
    Willard Van Orman Quine (b. 1908)

    As the shade went up
    And the ambulance came crashing through the dust
    Of the new day, the moon and the sun and the stars,
    And the iceberg slowly sank
    In the volcano and the sea ran far away
    Yellow over the hot sand, green as the green trees.
    John Ashbery (b. 1927)