Meet and mingle with Ernest Hemingway's grandson

Published: Thursday, October 3, 2013 at 03:55 PM.

To understand his father, who died in 2001 at age 69, Hemingway realized he had to write about his grandfather.

To comprehend their relationship, he used a lot of letters they wrote in the 1950s to each other that have never been published before.

"My book took a departure from the average Hemingway memoir," he said. "I don't see my father as a black sheep. I see him as a logical extension of his father. My grandfather experimented with words and my father experimented with his body."

Gregory had a series of five operations to attempt to alter his sexuality.

"But he remains my father," said John. "I did not think I had two mothers. The person is the person. Although at times he thought he was a freak."

John believes his father, like Ernest, suffered from deep clinical depression and when he was in the mildly manic phase, he was creative. He says it was while in one of the periods of deep depression that his grandfather killed himself. He believes the mental struggles may have complicated the sexual identity confusion in his father.

"My father was born in 1931. At that time there was no help except for Lithium. You just deal with it," he said.

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