2223 Words9 Pages
Kyla Cloud
English 101
15 April 2015
They Carried Emotional Burdens
In the novel, The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien not only are there many cases of lost innocence but there are many other complications that come with it. The novel itself is stated to be a fiction novel, but in many examples it shows that Tim O’Brien himself had a personal connection to the stories told. This leaves us with the idea that just like his character, Tim O’Brien was using storytelling to combat his experiences in the Vietnam War. It seems as though O’Brien has a lot of themes that contradict themselves, such as; what is happening truth and story truth, loss of innocence and imagining it is still there, courage and cowardice, and guilt versus
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Tim O’Brien is a great example of lost innocence. He gives full proof examples on how his innocence was lost, not only in the war, but before the war as well. O’Brien (character) speaks into depth about his loss of innocence in the last chapter of the novel, The Lives of the Dead, here he tells the story of how he experienced love and death at the same time. Linda was O’Brien 's (character) first love, when they were nine years old they fell in love, and the character O’Brien describes that although they were so young he truly felt that this was true love. Linda had cancer, and soon after their first date Linda passed away. She was the first loss of innocence for him, she was the first dead body he had ever seen, and that was extremely hard on him, as it would be for any nine year old, or anyone seeing someone they thought they were deeply in love with. Linda was the reason that O’Brien began writing in the first place. In order to make sense of his life O’Brien began to write to deal with the hard times. He believes that stories can help you deal with the issues in your life, reflecting on the good times, or fantasizing about what you want to actually occur. “The thing about a story is that you dream it as you tell it, hoping that others might then dream along with you, and in this way memory and imagination and language combine to make spirits in the
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