The image many of us have of Ernest Hemingway is pretty simplistic: An iconic writer who favored stripped-down prose, and, in public, epitomized hyper-masculinity to an almost cartoonish degree.

The image filmmaker Ken Burns uncovered while working on his latest PBS documentary epic is, thankfully, much more complex. “We were drawn to trying to get at a real Hemingway,” Burns said. “I think the persona of the wild man, the drunk, the bar guy, the big-game hunter, the big-sea fisherman is sort of what we inherit — the baggage we carry. But we lost everything the second we began this project. Al…

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