A Soldier 's Burden : Analysis Of The Things They Carried

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Will Reils APUSH Hopper February 25, 2016 A Soldier’s Burden: Analysis of The Things They Carried Tim O’Brien, the author of The Things They Carried, was also the main character and narrator who gives a soldier’s personal outlook on war. O’Brien writes personal and fictional stories using the several soldiers he knew during the Vietnam War. Mentally and physically, he and his fellow soldiers went through a lot. Some getting through it and others did not. Their struggles offer much to learn about what a person can go through. Although in The Things They Carried soldiers physically carried large amounts of equipment, the mental and emotional burden influenced them on a deeper level due to the fear of death, judgement, and loss. There are a few instances during the book where a character is forces themselves to do something because they are afraid of the shame they would have to endure had they not done it. In the chapter “On the Rainy River”, Tim O’Brien tells the self-uncertainty he had to go through when he knew he had a good future but was drafted to the Vietnam War. He explains how being shamed by his loved ones and peers, in a sense, motivated him to go to war instead of fleeing the country. The respect of his community and family was something he truly cared for and didn’t want to give up. This is one of the more powerful chapters in the book because it gives O’Brien some clarity on what is important in his life. This theme of fear as motivation can not only apply to

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