In Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried”, O’Brien created several allusions that each character endured during the Vietnam War. Throughout the story were vast representations of the things the soldiers carried both mentally and physically. The things they carried symbolized their individual roles internally and externally. In addition to the symbolism, imagination was a focal theme that stood out amongst the characters. This particular theme played a role as the silent killer amongst Lt. Cross and the platoon both individually and collectively as a group. The theme of imagination created an in depth look of how the war was perceived through each character which helped emphasize their thoughts from an emotional standpoint of being young men out at war.
Many may question the true meaning of love. However, there is not an exact description. According to Merriam-Webster, The full definition of love is “a (1): strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties-maternal love for a child (2): attraction based on sexual desire: affection and tenderness felt by lovers (3): affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests”. Love played a role in Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried. First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross is the platoon leader. While stationed in the Vietnam, Lieutenant Cross was infatuated with Martha. He used his memory and imagination to escape from the scenes from the war.
There are two types of people that fight in wars; those who consider their patriotic duty an honor and those who entered the war by force. In 1990, twenty years after returning from the Vietnam War, Tim O’Brien published The Things They Carried, a disturbing and remorseful collection of short stories that gives detailed, yet fictional, accounts of the horrific events that occurred during the war. Later in 2012, after his tour of duty, Chris Kyle released American Sniper, a humble and passionate memoir that describes what Kyle had to face during his tour. While The Things They Carried utilizes symbolism and similes to inform the reader about the horrors of war, American Sniper uses flashbacks and imagery to demonstrate that some people “come alive” during the war.
Laurence Stern wrote, “ No body, but he who has felt it, can conceive what a plaguing thing it is to have a man’s mind torn asunder by two projects of equal strength, both obstinately pulling in a contrary direction at the same time.” By interpreting this quote, Stern says that no one can understand what it feels like for a man to have his mind torn apart by two equivalent forces that pull him apart in opposite directions inside. There was much underlying meaning and connection from Laurence Stern’s quote and to The Things They Carried. In The Things They Carried, Tim O’Brien is the author as well as the character who is pulled apart by two projects: war and morals. The war in Vietnam heavily impacts each soldier causing them to yearn for
"The Things They Carried" list the variety of things his fellow soldiers in the Alpha Company brought on their missions. Several of these things cannot be seen, including guilt and fear, while others are specific physical objects, including matches, morphine, M-16 rifles, and M&M's candy.
How does death affect the behavior of people? Although death affects everyone's behavior differently, knowledge of one's imminent death is a main force behind behavioral changes. This knowledge causes emotions that motivate people to act in ways that they normally would not. In Tim O'Brien's 'The Things They Carried,'; the knowledge of death and its closeness causes the men in the story to alter their behavior by changing they way they display power, modifying emotions to relieve guilt, and by exhibiting different actions to ease anxiety.
Thus, O’Brien wants the readers to understand that it is not the events that happened, but the feelings these men felt, and emphasize this by repeating it multiple times; then described that it is this way because since the soldiers are in the war they lose the sense of what is real and unreal. Therefore, O’Brien does this so his audience understand that there is more to the story than just words. As well as to make his audience think deeper in a way that when he is using metaphors saying “war is hell” war is not actually hell, but the events that occurred, people dying, being isolated, feeling shame because they acted unreasonable, made these men feel like they were actually in hell. Therefore, he successfully persuades the audience that the war stories are true and untrue by reinforcing his message at the end, and leave the reader with a final thought which is his whole point in this
One of the main characters in the short story “The Things They Carried”, written by Tim O’Brien, is a twenty-four year old Lieutenant named Jimmy Cross. Jimmy is the assigned leader of his infantry unit in the Vietnam War, but does not assume his role accordingly. Instead, he’s constantly daydreaming, along with obsessing, over his letters and gifts from Martha. Martha is a student at Mount Sebastian College in New Jersey, Jimmy’s home state. He believes that he is in love with Martha, although she shows no signs of loving him. This obsession is a fantasy that he uses to escape from reality, as well as, take his mind off of the war that surrounds him, in Vietnam. The rest of the men in his squad have items that they carry too, as a way
In The Things They Carried, Author Tim O’brien uses many different languages to dramatize his troublesome dilemma in the chapter, “On the Rainy River.” O'brien can go against his own will , stay with his family and go to the war or be a coward and escape to Canada to get away. He starts off by stressing the fact that he was so worried about going off to the war that he starts hallucinating about being in the presence of different people. Furthermore, the Author attempts to put the readers into his shoes by exaggerating the way he felt at the moment and by making the setting seem so realistic. He lastly transitions into using repetition towards the end to stress the whole idea of his dilemma and how long it really seems
The protagonist of this chapter is Rat Kiley. Rat tells a story about his assignment in the mountains of Chu Lai.
“The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien is a short story written about the Vietnam War. The title has two meanings. The first is their duties and equipment for the war. The second, the emotional sorrows they were put through while at war. Their wants and needs, the constant worry of death were just a few of the emotional baggage they carried. During the Vietnam War, like all wars, there were hard times. Being a soldier wasn’t easy. Soldiers always see death, whether it be another soldier or an enemy. In “The Things They Carried,” Tim O’Brien explores the motivation of solders in the Vietnam War to understand their role in combat, to stay in good health, and accept the death of a fellow soldier.
O'Brien's The Things They Carried O’Connor remarks “The Things They Carried” is a short story that is written “as an experience not an abstraction” and that “the meaning has been embodied in it”. These quotations are truly pure in description and interpretation of the short story as the reader, must look beyond the crude physical properties of the objects and actions chronicled and focus more upon their hidden meanings and messages. O’Brien uses the physical characteristics of weight to make an impact upon the reader to relate with the men. In emphasizing the soldier’s everyday burden, the reader can easily relate to the situation in general. As the story progresses, the main attention of the
After reading pages 19-20 of The Things They Carried, Tim O'Brien provides readers with numerous literary devices that make it easier for readers to interpret the thoughts, actions, and lives of the soldiers. To begin with, the first literary device that he used is parallelism. O'Brien repeatedly uses the word and to add additional phrases that gives dramatic effect and emphasis on how the soldiers reacted to the war. He says, “They twitched and made moaning sounds and covered their heads and said Dear Jesus and flopped around on the earth and fired their weapons blindly and cringed and sobbed and begged for the noise to stop.” When O'Brien says this, it lets readers know that being in war isn't a walk in the park, lots of pain is being inflicted upon the soldiers, like how they have to consider the possibility of dying which produces fear as their unconditioned response. Additionally, this can also be an example of the literary term cacophony. The words cringed, and sobbed, and begged, are words that sound unpleasant and describes the situation as unpalatable.
The Vietnam War marked one of the most violent times in American history. The impact of the war affected soldiers long after the war and many of the soldiers remain traumatized from the incidents of the war today. These burdens that the soldiers carried remained largely unnoticed until the late 1990’s. “Stop the Sun” by Gary Paulsen and “The Things They Carried” by Tim O'Brien detail the effect that the war has on soldiers through realistic fiction. “The Things They Carried” shows the physical and psychological weight that the soldiers carry while fighting in a war. O’Brien uses figurative and literal language to portray the weight that the soldiers bear. For this reason, I prefer “The Things They Carried” by Tim O'Brien.
As the book by O'Brien The Things They Carried continue plus the short stories from Patriots, it made me think more and more about the purpose of the war and the consequences of the war on soldiers. The war started because of the political disagreements and because of that, people had to go and fight for their country's standpoint. According to the O'Brien book, when he is visiting Vietnam after the war, his daughter asked him: "This whole war, why was everybody so mad at everybody else?" and he answers her, "They weren't mad, exactly. Some people wanted one thing, other people wanted another thing (175)." The whole conflict was based on disagreement, that Vietnam wanted to be independent does not matter who is going to help them to reach