Evaluation and analysis of the images to
The Old Man and the Sea
This story is about an old man who finally took a great Marlin and got others’
admiration after 84days without taking a fish and 3-day persistence and effort.
In the story, the author described the old man’s characteristics directly, such as
“Everything about him is old, except his eyes” to show he was old, “he had gone 84 days
now without taking a fish” to show he was unlucky, “he took down his wife’s tinted
photograph because it made him too lonely to see it” to show he was lonely and etc. He
also delineated a lot of images to reflect the specialties of the old man and to help readers know him better.
There was a boy in the story. The boy once fished with the old man. He had not only learned fishing skills from the old man, but also learned the spirit of self-esteem, self-improvement and responsibility, and understood life’s hard. The boy was another
stage of the old man. Since one man could not dream of two of himself, the old man never dreamed of the boy though they were closely associated. The boy was the power source of the old man not to bow to fate. Whenever the old man faced difficulties, he wished “the boy were here”. With the boy, there were not only pain and disasters, but joy and hope in life. The boy can also be regard as the future of human beings. With the boy, human society can be forever lasting and unremitting.
There were groups of lions in the old man’s dream. The old man always dreamed of
lion, on one hand, because he wanted to live like the lions which lived in groups and had many fellows, which indicated the old man’s loneliness. On the other hand, he dreamed
of lions because lions were strong and brave, which symbolized the old man’s pursuit of
spirit of power and brave fighting.
Here comes to the stuffs in the old man’s skiff. “The sail was patched with flour
sacks and, furled, it looked like the flag of permanent defeat.” The old and shabby sail revealed the
old man’s senium. And his scanty stuffs and blunt knife uncovered the fact that he was not young.
The old man was sorry for the birds, especially the small delicate dark terns that were always flying and looking and almost never finding. He thought the birds had a harder life than we did except for the robber birds and the heavy strong ones. In fact, he was sorry for himself. He was sorry for without taking a fish for 84 days though he sailed on time everyday. He thought the tern
had a harder life than they did. However, his life was not easy——living alone, without taking a fish
and even being made fun of.
When the old man saw a man-of-war bird with his long black wings circling in the sky ahead of him, he said “He’s got something. He’s not just looking.” The old man has
sharp eyes and rich experience on the sea which endowed him sagacity and insight to estimate immediately. His discovery of the man-of-war bird’s getting something hinted
that he would get something as well.
When the warbler, a small bird from the north, rested on the old man’s hand, he
asked, “How old are you?” He cared about age very much since he asked about the age
first of all. That is because he was old. He asked whether the bird was tired because he was tired at that time. He told the bird to take a good rest, then go in and take its chance like any man or bird of fish. As a matter of fact, that was what he wanted to tell himself. All in all, the bird was him who was tired and needed rest.
The jerky hand was another him as well. When finding the hand cramped, the old man said, “What kind of a hand is that?” This sentence was not said to the hand, but to
himself. The hand was old and weak. So was the old man. He was not only complaining about the hand, but about himself. “How do you feel, hand?” “He’s coming up, hand.
Come on hand. Please come on.” He treated the hand as a man, or we can say, as himself.
The Marlin the old man got was two feet longer than the skiff. It was quite strong that he was able to hold on to the skiff and swim for 3 days. Nevertheless, the old man was stronger, for he was able to hold on to the great Marlin for 3 days and caught it. He though the Marlin “maybe too wise” while he was wiser since he knew every step to
catch the Marlin clearly and confidently. After they were attacked by sharks, he said sorry to the Marlin 3 times. Actually, he said sorry to himself in the meantime. He said, “I am
sorry that I went too far out. I ruined us both.” Yes, if he hadn’t gone so far, he would not
catch the Marlin, would not make the Marlin attacked and ate and would not make himself tired and hurt. But it was his persistence that led his success. “How many did you
ever killed, old fish?” Actually, the old man was asking himself. And the sentence “You
do not have that spear on your head for nothing” was used to indicate that the old man
was strong and had experienced a lot.
The images the author used in this book have not only revealed the characteristics of
the old man vividly, but also reflected the author’s value and life experience to some
extent. This book is worth appreciating and analyzing.