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What is the 4 central theme of Hemingway’s short story Old Man at the Bridge? Explain

What is the 4 central theme of Hemingway’s short story Old Man at the Bridge? Explain

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    The four important themes of the short story war in violence conflict between man and inner self kindness towards animals and the trauma of war and displacement.

    War and violence:- This story highlights how war caused havoc on the lives of people, especially on those who are not even directly linked with the war. The old man was never a part of the war yet he had to leave his animals, whom he considered his family, behind in order to save his life. The old man was a victim of the war and through him, the author tried to portray the condition of the refugees during that time.

    Man and inner self:- The story brings out the conflict between man and his inner self through the character of the old man. The old man’s animals were like his family and he was guilty of leaving them behind in a war prone area but there was no other option. When he cross the bridge he was saved physically but consciously he was still in trouble. 

    Kindness towards animals:- for the old man his animals are his family. He cares more about the animals lives than his own life and his hesitating to leave them behind and three. He is torn between focusing on the plight of innocent animals, who were also like him victims of the war, and running away to save his own life. His nature towards the animals shows that he’s a true embodiment of humanity.

    Trauma of war and displacement:- war is never the solution of peace. The war, not only causes people to leave behind their native land and their family but also to seek the security of another place where they know no one. The victims of the war, both mentally and physically, are exhausted just like the 72-year-old man sitting by the bridge, dejected and helpless, because he had to leave his animals behind.

    Summary of the Short Story Old Man at the Bridge

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