A Prayer For Owen Meany Essay

A Prayer For Owen Meany Essay

Length: 1126 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

A Prayer for Owen Meany, a novel by John Irving, is a touching and morbid novel riddled with death and uncertainty. It’s overall story, however, about two young boys growing up in the 1950’s, is a story where relationships are tested and also strengthened because of a peculiar child, Owen Meany. Even after the death of Owen Meany himself, the relationship between the two is as strong as ever because after death Owen continues to protect Johnny and let him know he’s not going to leave him. While alive Owen protected Johnny by making it so he could not get drafted into the Vietnam War by cutting off his index finger, effectively making it so the he cannot shoot a gun. Owen however, went along with the war and enlisted himself into it by the ROTC program that had paid for his college education. Although Owen never actually got to go to Vietnam, he was as a part of the war as any other soldier, bringing the bodies of the lost soldiers back home to the grieving families. He was also a war hero, given the so-called Soldier’s Medal: “For heroism that involves the voluntary risk of life under conditions other than those of conflict with an opposing armed force” (Page 615). The involvement of the Vietnam War and the draft in the lives of Johnny Wheelwright and Owen Meany had been a major factor of how their lives were changed.
The Vietnam War was a prolonged conflict between nationalist forces striving to unify the country of Vietnam, while it was under a communist government, and the United States, who had help from the South Vietnamese to try and prevent the spread of communism to other countries (The History of the Vietnam War). The war was also known as the American War (in Vietnam, as opposed to the Vietnam War in America), the Vietn...


... middle of paper ...


...that it was just a dream, but again Owen doesn 't believe this. It’s because of this dream that Owen wants to go to Vietnam so badly. He wants to be the hero that he thinks he’s going to be from saving the children from dying, Owen doesn’t know that he’s going to save the children in America.
While Owen was on leave in Arizona after bringing a family 's son home after crashing a plane, he calls Johnny and asks him to come and visit him there, at first Johnny’s skeptical but eventually agrees and flies down from New Hampshire to meet his best friend. At first Johnny has to wait for Owen’s plane to land and see’s the potential family of the dead pilot, a brother dressed as if he was going off to war himself, the mother and father, and a pregnant sister, whom he assumes is pregnant by either the brother or the father, arguing because of the late arrival of the plane.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Free Essays - A Prayer for Owen Meany

- The main theme of A Prayer for Owen Meany is religious faith -- specifically, the relationship between faith and doubt in a world in which there is no obvious evidence for the existence of God. John writes on the first page of the book that Owen Meany is the reason that he is a Christian, and ensuing story is presented as an explanation of the reason why. Though the plot of the novel is quite complicated, the explanation for Owen's effect on Johnny's faith is extremely simple; Owen's life is a miracle -- he has supernatural visions and dreams, he believes that he acts as God's instrument, and he has divine foresight of his own death -- and offers miraculous and almost undeniable evidence o...   [tags: Prayer for Owen Meany Essays]

Free Essays
991 words (2.8 pages)

Religion in Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving Essay

- Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving is a novel in which religion is of great importance. One of the main themes in this novel is faith in God and oneself, and even more, the conflict between belief and doubt. Irving writes in such a way, that this is very evident throughout the book. John Wheelwright, at the start of the novel, is a young boy who does not seem to know much about how strong his faith really is. Part of the reason for this, is that the choice between believing in and doubting God is that there isn’t any complete evidence that He even exists....   [tags: Prayer for Owen Meany Essays]

Free Essays
727 words (2.1 pages)

Beloved And A Prayer For Owen Meany Essay

- Family and Friendship are the two things that define who we are. These two things are what we belong to and they help create our identity. In Beloved and A Prayer for Owen Meany this is evident because our main characters are who they are because of the loved ones surrounding them. We see it with Sethe and the amount of love she has for her family that is so strong that she is willing to kill her own kids. We also see it with John Wheelwright and how the death of his mother at the hands of his best friend Owen has affected him but also changed him for the better because he has Owen by his side who will never let anything bad happen to him....   [tags: Love, Interpersonal relationship]

Strong Essays
1464 words (4.2 pages)

A Prayer for Owen Meany Essay

- A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving through a Jungian Archetypal Lens Carl Jung was a Swiss psychologist and psychiatrist who developed many theories concerning the unconscious mind. Jung’s theories state that the unconscious part of a human’s psyche has two different layers, the personal unconscious and the collective unconscious. The personal unconscious is unique to every individual; however, the collective unconscious “is inborn.” (Carl Jung, Four Archetypes, 3) The collective unconscious is present in everyone’s psyche, and it contains archetypes which are “those psychic contents which have not yet been submitted to conscious elaboration” (Jung, Archetypes, 5); they are templates of...   [tags: Literary Analysis, John Irving]

Strong Essays
2622 words (7.5 pages)

A Prayer For Owen Meany Essay

- A Prayer for Owen Meany, a novel by John Irving, is a touching and morbid novel riddled with death and uncertainty. It’s overall story, however, about two young boys growing up in the 1950’s, is a story where relationships are tested and also strengthened because of a peculiar child, Owen Meany. Even after the death of Owen Meany himself, the relationship between the two is as strong as ever because after death Owen continues to protect Johnny and let him know he’s not going to leave him. While alive Owen protected Johnny by making it so he could not get drafted into the Vietnam War by cutting off his index finger, effectively making it so the he cannot shoot a gun....   [tags: Vietnam War, Vietnam, South Vietnam, Richard Nixon]

Strong Essays
1126 words (3.2 pages)

A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving Essay

- How many people honestly know their true identity. In today’s society, some try so hard to fit in, they lose themselves in the mixture. However, those who stay true to themselves sometimes lose society in the mix. In the novel, A Prayer for Owen Meany, written by John Irving, the characters all show some sort of notable identity. Whether the character’s characteristics are known or hidden, they all assume uniqueness that significantly affect major characters in the novel such as Johnny and Owen....   [tags: Literary Analysis, Identity]

Strong Essays
940 words (2.7 pages)

A Prayer for Owen Meany Essay

- A Prayer for Owen Meany Not the least of my problems is that I can hardly even imagine what kind of an experience a genuine, self-authenticating religious experience would be. Without somehow destroying me in the process, how could God reveal himself in a way that would leave no room for doubt. If there were no room for doubt, there would be no room for me.- Frederick Buechner In the novel, A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving, Owen Meany’s belief of predestination makes a significant impact on John Wheelwright’s emotional stability as an adult....   [tags: English Literature Essays]

Strong Essays
1344 words (3.8 pages)

A Prayer for Owen Meany Essay

- A Prayer for Owen Meany In literature of significant standing, no act of violence is perpetrated without reason. For a story to be legitimate in the area of fine literature violence cannot be used in a wanton manner. In John Irving’s modern classic, A Prayer for Owen Meany the audience is faced with multiple scenes of strong violence but violence is never used without reason. All of the violent acts depicted in the novel are totally necessary for the characters and the plot to develop....   [tags: essays research papers]

Strong Essays
726 words (2.1 pages)

A Prayer for Owen Meany Essay

- Touching, intriguing, depressing, these are all words that would describe the book A Prayer for Owen Meany. This story shows those characteristics by how showing how one’s life can change for better and worse, by having a good friend. One of the main characters in this book is a man by the name of John Wheelwright. John is led to religious faith by the life of his best friend Owen Meany. Owen believes in fate and he has visions of what the future holds. In the beginning when John and Owen were eleven, they were both on the same baseball team....   [tags: John Irving]

Free Essays
919 words (2.6 pages)

Suspense Examples In A Prayer For Owen Meany Essay

- Different Ways John Irving Creates Suspense in A Prayer for Owen Meany In John Irving's novel titled, A Prayer for Owen Meany, suspenseful events are of abundance, and there are multiple ways the author creates this suspense. Among these methods of creating suspense, four that stand out are the use of setting, the pace of the story, the involvement of mysteries to be solved, and the ability of the reader to easily identify and sympathize with the protagonist. By placing a character in a gloomy or solitary place, uncomfortable feelings are created, which append to the suspense....   [tags: Book Novel Analysis John Irving]

Free Essays
1482 words (4.2 pages)