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Things They Carried Term

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Autor:   •  December 9, 2010  •  2,339 Words (10 Pages)  •  707 Views

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How can one realize the seriousness of a particular event? Situations in history exist only in our thoughts rather than our presence. As past events have unfolded so has the opportunity for growth. One such era includes the Vietnam War. Tim O' Brien's novel entitled The Things They Carried creates an atmosphere of knowledge surrounding the struggles related to the Vietnam War. To grasp the concept of such a brutal historical event one must understand the struggles and decisions

made by people during that era. Thus giving us the capacity to expand our minds.

The Vietnam War sparked many controversial topics and views. Some wanted peace and others wanted war. In the end the political machine waged a confrontation with what it believed to be an opportunity. Tim O' Brien was a soldier who was drfted in 1968 to serve for our benefit. He was reluctant to go and even attempted to flee. He changed his mind and was eventually sent to the front lines of battle. While there he witnessed the "Things people Carried" with them. These things could be physical or emotional. In his novel you will realize that each physical burden underscores an emotional one. These physical and emotional burdens were carried from the beginning of the mens service until there deaths. The major conflict conveyed by Tim O'Brien deals with the grappling effects of the Vietnam War. In his stories he talks about all the men in his company and how each event affected them. He also shows there struggles and how the physical and emotional burdens either weakened them or strengthened them in a tramatic time.

The War itself proved to be very costly. Many men lost their lives for an undefined cause. Tim O' Brien also relays the effects of soldiers after the war. Even when the men went home they still carried the burdens as if they were welded to their souls. In many instances the deaths the men witnessed haunted them. While in the midst of war their minds did strange things to them. Some men would never live to see a nrmal day again. Some men were strong and some were proven to be weak when faced with struggle. All the events of battles and deaths are reconstructed through the memory of Tim O' Brien and the comrades of his company. All the feelings of grief,love,longing,morality and loneliness are visible within each man. All these stories and actions are put together through interconnected stories of the years spent in Vietnam by a soldier who felt these feelings as well.

The author shows that even in a time of despare bonds can occur. The men of that company shared a type of friendship that could not be duplicated in any other circumstance other than war. These men marched together into the unknown and understood that death was not to far behind them. They would smoke, drink , laugh, and reminece about the homeland together. Some men cracked with the pressure and some grew stronger. The story leads to the ending point of the life after the war. The author relays the message that you never really stop remembering the past. Whether or not it was a good thing to do didn't matter at all. They were there and it had happened so what truths can be realized through such an event. Tim starts as a young man scared of what will come. He travels through the war and meets a lot of people carrying a lot of different things. He sees many men die and even kills a few himself. He luckily makes it out of the war situation and comes home only to dwell on his past. Things have changed for him as well as the other men that accompanied him on his journey through realization.

Within the text of this novel many realistic situations are reviewed. The authors main theme focuses on the physical and emotional burdens that he and the soldiers of Vietnam carried. He basically wants people to understand the reasoning behind the feelings and thoughts of those involved in tramatic situations. Tim O' Brien displays the background situations leading up to the war and how most men felt. Generally he wants to provide detailed information about the hardships of the war whether they be physical or emotional. Such devotion cannot be seen in any other type of situation. By revealing the thoughts and actions of the men Tim O' Brien can stress the importance of such a dramatic situation. In reality this effected much more than a few political negotiations. Our whole country suffered in some way while fighting this political war. The author believes in the necessity behind the blurring of the truth within stories. This novel also suggests the coming of age. He starts off a confused young teen who later becomes a man through the reality of experience.

Values are very important when talking about such a sensitive subject. Tim O' Brien's values are explained in his text. The obvious value is life, but that is not all. He values respect, honor, dignity, and most of all will. All the men in every situation encounter a type of will. The will to push on or remember as well as the will to fight through a struggle while putting the consequences aside. When the will is gone the men lose hope in themselves as well as there country. This novel does not just apply to the men of Vietnam at all. It applies to every man, women, or child who has ever had to define hardship and struggle. The strains can tear apart many things while bringing other things closer together. His views may be bias due to the fact that he was actually inmvolved in the war and has a lot of pride in the situation he was in. Other than that he has no reason to manipulate the events spoken of in The Things They Carried.

His book is probably one of the most accurate descriptions of the lifestyle focused around the Vietnam war. His assumptions are general and many other stories back up his opinions. Many Americans and most of all veterans agree with his interpretations on the war. The way the soldiers lived before, during , and after the war are extremely realistic. The reason for this lies in his actual participation in the novel and in his actual life. All of the events and lifestyles can be justified through personal experience. Other Vietnam war stories include the same reasoning and burdens that Tim addresses. In a couple of scenes in his book he addresses the dillusions of the men which can be viewed as false. The disallusionment sis factual in itself but the actual events are hersay. The events described do provide realization in the stories. The authors assumptions are generally correct and do not deviate from the initial fictional events and actions occurring in the real situation.

Throughout history books have been written portraying the lives of men in warfare. Tim O' Brien's first person account of the war provides a stable amount of credibility. His writings have allowed the readers to understand


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