The vast archive of the JFK library helps bring the “Hemingway” to life

Boston (AP) — A New Documentary on Ernest Hemingway — Taking advantage of the vast, lesser-known archives of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston — shedding new light on acclaimed novelists I am.

“Hemingway” by longtime collaborators Ken Burns and Lynn Novick will premiere on PBS for three consecutive nights starting April 5th, with the author and misogyny who loves alcohol, adventurers, outdoor men and bullfighting. We are looking more subtly at our long-standing reputation as. Due to internal turmoil, he eventually committed suicide at the age of 61.

The truth about the man, which many consider to be America’s greatest 20th-century novelist, is that his concise style made him an oversized celebrity who symbolized his unrepentant American masculinity, Novic. Said.

“I hope this film opens up opportunities to see Hemingway in different ways,” said Novic, who co-produced Burns and several other documentaries, including the Vietnam War and Prohibition. I will. “There is complexity under the surface.”

Its complexity was almost impossible to elaborate without the world’s largest Hemingway collection, which finally arrived at the JFK library, thanks to Hemingway and Kennedy’s widow.

Although they had never met, they praised each other and kept in touch easily. Hemingway was invited to Kennedy’s inauguration, but couldn’t do it because of his illness, said Hemingway scholar Hillary Justice, who lives in the library.

When Mary Hemingway, Hemingway’s fourth wife, was wondering what to do with her deceased husband, she asked Jackie Kennedy if she could be accommodated in the JFK Library.

The archive contains Hemingway’s manuscripts and approximately 11,000 photographs, including “The Sun Also Rises” and “For Whom the Bell Rings”.

Much of the material used in the documentary, if any, is not widely available, Novic said.

Burns had been to the JFK Library many times for some features, but he knew about the scope of Hemingway’s archives until he began researching films that had been produced over the years. did not.

“The Hemingway collection was at the heart of the process,” Burns said. “It helped us understand what disciplined writer he was.”

Many of the documentaries deal with complex relationships with women in Hemingway’s life. From mothers and sisters to nurses who fell in love while recovering from the wounds they suffered in World War I, to their four wives.

“Much of what he had in life was about love. He rushed to love, ran away from it, and ruined it,” Burns said.

Though thought to be the archetype of American masculinity, the filmmakers found that the truth about Hemingway’s masculinity was more complex.

As a child, Hemingway’s mother treated him and one of his sisters as twins, often in the same clothes, sometimes as boys and sometimes as girls. He explored gender fluidity in both books and life, growing his hair when his wife shortened it.

“We wanted to oppose this idea that Hemingway didn’t like women,” Novic said.

Novic’s favorite part of the collection was Hemingway’s manuscript, many of which were handwritten on notebooks purchased at the store. They show in great detail his thinking process as he wrote, rewritten, modified and edited his work through strikethroughs, graffiti and notes in the margins.

For example, Hemingway wrote dozens of endings in “A Farewell to Arms.” According to one count, it is as high as 47.

“From the first draft to the final manuscript, we can track how each piece evolved,” she said.

For Burns, the most striking part of the collection is a shrapnel fragment dug from Hemingway’s body after Hemingway was almost killed as a teenager driving a Red Cross ambulance in World War I. The experience of death had a major impact on Hemingway’s rest of his life and contributed to his death.

Whether you’re a Hemingway enthusiast or know virtually nothing about him, there’s something in the series for you, Novic said.

“There’s a lot to learn here and a new interpretation of his work and life,” she said.

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