"Hemingway at 100." An interview with American writers Richard Ford, Nicholas Delbanco and . Verdelle. Richard Ford remarks about Hemingway's spare style, "Hemingway often, because he was casual in talking about despair, because he was casual in letting his characters not say what they thought often, he didn't express for me enough. He was in many ways stingy with language and didn't express what I thought was literature's moral density and complexity accurately enough, or in a way, morally enough." Online NewsHour, PBS, 21 July 1999.
Nonetheless, the characters of Jim and Liz play to established gender stereotypes. Jim is a blacksmith, usually considered a manly profession, and discusses politics and keeps up with the news. He also goes out hunting with his neighbors and gets drunk with them upon his return, two traditionally masculine rituals. Liz, on the other hand, is completely subsumed in kitchen duties and in watching Jim. Her obsession with him approaches hero worship, and when their relationship reaches a crisis on the dock, she says no, but her nature prevents further confrontation when he ignores her.