the things they carried Essay

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The things they carried,by Tim O'brien      "Oh man, you fuckin' trashed the fucker. You scrambled his sorry self, look at that, you did, you laid him out like fuckin' Shredded Wheat." I chose to start off my essay with this particular exert from the book because I think that it very much represents the story in itself. Azar said this, after Tim (supposedly) killed a Vietnamese soldier with a hand grenade. It shows that in times of war, how callous men can become. However, callousness varies, whether they chose to be apathetic, like Tim shows us after his grenade episode. Or whether they choose to be more myopic, as shown through Azar's insensitive actions (i.e. the young lady's tragic loss, the puppy,…show more content…
Even the author undergoes an incredible change from the beginning of the story, and through the trials and tribulations, he becomes an almost completely different person. Although there were more situations in which this particular change was exhibited, I feel that these represented it to the most acute degree.      Incredible paranoia is one side effect of being surrounded by so much carnage. After Lee Strunk comes back from the undertakings involving his broken nose, Dave Jensen went into a mentality consisting of paranoid lunacy. When you are around a person who has an incredible amount of spite for you, as well as ready access to firearms, moreover nothing to lose, one cannot help but spend their days looking over your shoulder. Living in fear of someone you have crossed, waiting for the day when you will be caught off guard, giving them the chance to exact their horrible revenge. Jensen just could not take it any more, and he went as far as to break his own nose. It takes a certain type of motivation for a person to sit down and break his own nose. But afterwards, he felt as if a great burden had been lifted off of his shoulders. And that is exactly what the war did, it burdened these men, whether the baggage be physical or emotional, war is a burden that is not only difficult to remove, but difficult to carry.
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