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He demonstrates how heroism is possible in even the most seemingly mundane circumstances.
"The Old Man and the Sea" was a big success for Ernest Hemingway when it was published in 1952.
At first glance, the story appears to be a simple tale of an old Cuban fisherman who catches an enormous fish, only to lose it.
This victory does not end Santiago's journey; he is still far out to sea.
Santiago has to drag the marlin behind the boat, and the blood from the dead fish attracts sharks.
Sure enough, at noon, a big marlin takes hold of one of the lines, but the fish is far too big for Santiago to handle.
To avoid letting the fish escape, Santiago lets the line go slack so that the fish won't break his pole; but he and his boat are dragged out to sea for three days.Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea is the deceivingly simple story of an old Cuban fisherman who undergoes the most difficult struggle of his life.Despite being a relatively short work, the novel is filled not only with drama but with the parable of one man's perseverance through the hardest of times.It's the story of perseverance and the machismo of the old man against the elements.This slim novella -- it's only 127 pages -- helped to revive Hemingway's reputation as a writer, winning him great acclaim, including the Nobel Prize for literature.Enormous stamina and power arose in the breast of Santiago.The simple fisherman became a classical hero in his epic struggle.There's much more to the story -- a tale of bravery and heroism, of one man's struggle against his own doubts, the elements, a massive fish, sharks and even his desire to give up.The old man eventually succeeds, then fails, and then wins again.The old man exemplifies Hemingway's ideal of exhibiting "grace under pressure," as he refuses to submit to the overwhelming obstacles presented by the sea.Santiago's attitude seems to be that although he is faced with tragedy -- as everyone is sooner or later in life -- he will not cease struggling.