Edgar Allen Poe (1809-1849) and Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) were both controversial and intriguing writers of their times. People in their time were hesitant about their works. For the most part, their works were considered out there by the majority. Their non-Christian beliefs were not only reflected in their lives, but also in their works. Poe s life could be considered extremely tragic. When he was one year old, his father left his family. About one year later, his mother died from tuberculosis.
He was then adopted by a wealthy family who lived in Richmond, Virginia. For a while, his life began to get better; he studied at the University of Virginia. After only one term there, he was forced to drop out because of his gambling problem. He joined the army for a short time. In 1835, he married Virginia Clemm, his thirteen-year old cousin. Hemingway was born and raised in a thriving Chicago suburb. He was a considered a modern man of his time; he enjoyed fishing, hunting, boxing, and football. He wanted to join the army, but he was turned down because of an injury.
Still seeking life overseas, he joined the Red Cross in 1918 and left for Italy. Later he married Hadley Richardson, the first of his four wives. Poe s and Hemingway s lives were both very much alike. They became alcoholics and struggled with this problem until the end of their lives. They also both participated in indulgent lifestyles; they lived simply to please themselves. Poe wrote Tamerlane and other poems that were not widely recognized. As time past, his writings eventually did become popular. One of his most famous poems was The Raven.
Hemingway was a reporter for the Kansas City Star and the Toronto Daily Star. Some of his many works are: Farewell to Arms, In Our Time, The Sun Also Rises, and The Old Man and the Sea. Two years after the death of Poe s wife, he engaged Mrs. Sheldon. On his way back to Baltimore, he stopped in Richmond. He fell into a coma and was found lying in a gutter; he died a few days later. Hemingway s lifestyle also caught up to him, and his last seven years were extremely difficult. He committed suicide on July 2, 1961.
Poe wrote in the era of transcendental pessimism, but was actually a weakened version of a transcendental optimist. His effect on American people was to raise their consciousness of the American public in literature. His stories were not just intriguing, but also entertaining. Hemingway s works were controversial. He focused on developing theme. He used short sentences, which allowed him to have a range in audience. Poe and Hemingway are great writers in our American history. Their writings are entertaining, but one must not rely on the beliefs in these works.