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
ear America: Letters Home from Vietnam Book report The Vietnam War that commenced on November 1, 1955, and ended on April 30, 1975, took the soldiers through a devastating experience. Many lost their lives while others maimed as the war unfolded into its full magnitude. The book Dear America: Letters
The author, Tim O'Brien, is writing about an experience of a tour in the Vietnam conflict. This short story deals with inner conflicts of some individual soldiers and how they chose to deal with the realities of the Vietnam conflict, each in their own individual way as men, as soldiers.
It can be hard to fully comprehend the effects the Vietnam War had on not just the veterans, but the nation as a whole. The violent battles and acts of war became all too common during the long years of the conflict. The war warped the soldiers and civilians characters and desensitized their mentalities to the cruelty seen on the battlefield. Bao Ninh and Tim O’Brien, both veterans of the war, narrate their experiences of the war and use the loss of love as a metaphor for the detrimental effects of the years of fighting.
According to the Library of Illinois, “primary sources of information are those that provide first-hand accounts of the events, practices, or conditions you are researching.” There is no portion about reliability or the significance of truth within the explanation of a primary historical source. O’Brien’s recollection of his first-hand experience in the Vietnam war is a good primary source because highlights the collective consciousness of America during the war, the collective memory of the soldiers who fought, and the emotional things they had to carry with them through the remainder of their lives.
The Silent Killer: An Analysis of Imagination Evolving into a Distraction in Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried” 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.
The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien is a book not easily forgotten. A fictionalized version of O’Brien’s own experiences with the Vietnam War, it details the courage, carnage and camaraderie found on the front lines. Things is a gritty, intense read. On the opposite side of the spectrum lies Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott. Bird is a slightly snarky, entertaining book of writing techniques and tips. At first glance, Things and Bird have little to nothing in common. In reality, though, Lamott’s writing advice can be seen at work in The Things They Carried. In fact, part of Things’ unforgettable realism is achieved through the use of Lamott’s writing tips, especially those concerning honesty and truth.
Michelle Zhang Dr. Bloomquist 2/13/2015 Rhetorical Analysis A Whole New World: Construction and Destruction in The Things They Carried While the Vietnam War was a complex political pursuit that lasted only a few years, the impact of the war on millions of soldiers and civilians extended for many years beyond its termination. Soldiers killed or were killed; those who survived suffered from physical wounds or were plagued by PTSD from being wounded, watching their platoon mates die violently or dealing with the moral implications of their own violence on enemy fighters. Inspired by his experiences in the war, Tim O’Brien, a former soldier, wrote The Things They Carried, a collection of fictional and true war stories that embody the
Fact Verses Fiction in O'Brien's The Things They Carried "The difference between fairy tales and war stories is that fairy tales begin with 'Once upon a time,' while war stories begin with 'Shit, I was there!'" (Lomperis 41). How does one tell a good war story? Is it important to be accurate to the events that took place? Does the reader need to trust the narrator? In The Things They Carried, Tim O'Brien examines what it takes to tell a good war story. He uses his own experiences in Vietnam in conjunction with his imagination to weave together a series of short stories into a novel.
O’ Brien starts the chapter off by telling us that the war “wasn’t all about terror and violence.” (30) Then, he tells us a number of very short stories about the sweetness of war. He introduce the readers through a detailed description of what being in a war feels like and why war sucks. “One leg for Chrissake. Some poor fucker ran out of ammo.” (30) tells us that the boy’s one leg showed how much war sucks and being in a war is very painful. The result of having that boy with one leg left is because of all of his ammo have been depleted to defend for himself. O’ Brien compares the war to a Ping Pong ball, saying that you could put a spin on it and make it dance. When he sits at his typewriter and remembers Kiowa dying in a field of dirtyness
As many have noted, O'Brien ingeniously facilitates a mood of incongruity, or disconnection, between fiction and fact in The Things They Carried through sheer structure. By blurring lines between fantasy and reality, THINGS truly becomes a contradiction of itself. As Catherine Calloway notes, one of the ways in which O'Brien achieves this blurring of lines, is to model the narrator of THINGS after himself, a drafted Vietnam war veteran, a Harvard graduate, and a writer with the same name of Tim O'Brien (para. 3). O'Brien is aware that the practiced reader knows not to confuse the narrator with the author, and yet the reader is encouraged to do just that. The purpose, of course, is to keep the reader as unbalanced, as unsure, of what we are told to be truths, as is the Vietnam soldier.
In the first chapter of the short story, “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien, every character carries literal figurative things with them. Each item they carry has a significant meaning that helps them keep their mindset straight and their psychological well being intact. The soldiers are in war, most likely they are all scared of death. They need something on their mind to make them happy and also help them survive further on with the war. That is why Tim O’Brien’s piece is a perfect example to read, to learn more about some of the burdens that may be in some soldiers. Furthermore, a character from the first chapter that really caught my eye and relates mostly to this piece was Kiowa. He carried a minimal amount of things, but the things
The Vietnam war, a blemish on the face of American history is often dismissed and brushed under the rug. But veterans Daly Walker and Tim O'Brien exhume the war stories they spent decades burying in order to expose the truth about war. Despite the authors differing styles they both utilize symbolism to relate to the audience the tragedies that occurred during the war, and the battles they continue to fight even today.
A Literary Analysis of How to Tell a True War Story The short story that will be discussed, evaluated, and analyzed in this paper is a very emotionally and morally challenging short story to read. Michael Meyer, author of the college text The Compact Bedford Introduction to Literature, states that
Forty-two years has passed since the Fall of Saigon 1975, yet still the Vietnam War and its aftermath are not to be forgotten. The first of the wars to be publically broadcasted earned the Vietnam War the name “Television War.” Despite the public’s division on the war, young men filled with patriotism and purpose went off to war. These men were unsure and unskilled to survive and fight in the jungles of Vietnam. Soon, the war proved to be more than a physical battle, but one of mental endurance as well. Novels such as, Falling Through the Earth by Danielle Trussoni and Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes allow for a different interpretation of the war. The novels expose the world of the characters, where readers gain an understanding of the characters’