Tim O'brien's "On the Rainy River" is a true story told by a 41 year old of his life at the age of 21. The fact that O'brien is writing this 20 years later adds a new aspect to the story. He describes himself as a young man with the world in his back pocket. O'brien has just graduated from Macalester College and has a free ride to Harvard. Unfortunately, his storybook world collapses when he receives a draft notice for the Vietnam war, a war that he has "taken a modest stand against"(44) in 1968.
Upon receiving his draft notice, O'brien was thrown into a world of what he calls "moral confusion"(44). As a 21 year-old, he follows every rule put forth in front of him, even though he says "he couldn't tolerate authority"(45). If O'brien didn't follow authority, though, he never would have been successful. This is one of the causes of his moral confusion. O'Brien has never had to make moral testing decisions in his life, like whether to face his family or to run to Canada. Another cause for his moral confusion was his stand on the war. He thought it was wrong for numerous reasons, such as not knowing why they were fighting. O'Brien would have gladly fought in a war that he believed in but the draft board didn't let him choose his war. All of these pressures came down to whether he would be the conformist of the past or believe in what he thought was right.
All of the pressures built up and something inside of him cr...
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- Tim O'brien's "On the Rainy River" Tim O'brien's "On the Rainy River" is a true story told by a 41 year old of his life at the age of 21. The fact that O'brien is writing this 20 years later adds a new aspect to the story. He describes himself as a young man with the world in his back pocket. O'brien has just graduated from Macalester College and has a free ride to Harvard. Unfortunately, his storybook world collapses when he receives a draft notice for the Vietnam war, a war that he has "taken a modest stand against"(44) in 1968.... [tags: Tim O'brien On the Rainy River]
674 words (1.9 pages)
- What is freedom. Freedom can be defined in multiple forms. The dictionary would define freedom as being free from confinement. However, it is more than that. Freedom is defined as not only free from confinement, but also as being free from oppression and the life that you would normally live beforehand. Two examples of freedom are defined in both Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka, and On the Rainy River from the compilation of short stories called The Things They Carried from Tim O’Brien. Metamorphosis is about a story of Gregor Samsa.... [tags: Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka, Tim OBrien]
1238 words (3.5 pages)
- The relationship you have with others often has a direct effect on the basis of your very own personal identity. In the essay "On The Rainy River," the author Tim O'Brien tells about his experiences and how his relationship with a single person had effected his life so dramatically. It is hard for anyone to rely fully on their own personal experiences when there are so many other people out there with different experiences of their own. Sometimes it take the experiences and knowledge of others to help you learn and build from them to help form your own personal identity.... [tags: O'Brien Rainy River Essay Analysis]
1068 words (3.1 pages)
- In the book The Things They Carried, Tim O’Brien uses many themes to help draw connections between the book and the reader. O’Brien’s “On The Rainy River” chapter contains countless motifs that make this chapter so compelling. “On The Rainy River” describes his decision whether to enter the draft or to flee to Canada where he would not get condemned. The main theme in this chapter is embarrassment. First Lieutenant Tim O’Brien goes insane from the embarrassment he would face if he did not enter the draft.... [tags: cowardism, rainy river, tim o'brien]
762 words (2.2 pages)
- Vietnam was a highly debated war among citizens of the United States. This war was like no other with regards to how it affected people on the home front. In past war’s the population of the United States mainly supported the war and admired soldiers for their courage. During the Vietnam War, citizens of the U.S. had a contradictory view then in the past. This dilemma of not having the support of the people originates from the culture and the time period. During this time period it would be the fourth time Americans went to war in that century which made it tough for Americans to give their supportS (Schlesinger 8).... [tags: Vietnam War, Cold War, United States, Ho Chi Minh]
1558 words (4.5 pages)
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1717 words (4.9 pages)
- “How many years can some people exist before they're allowed to be free...How many times can a man turn his head pretending he just doesn't see?” The lyrics of Blowin’ in the Wind strike the painful feeling when our dignity is smothered by unbearable fear. In the short story “On the Rainy River”, Tim O’Brien explores the idea that we cannot follow our heart in the face of terror. Through his experiences, O’Brien suggests that when our insecurity clashes with our self-respect, our moral conscience is often torn into pieces until we are left with no choice but to accept the ruthless reality with a desperate heart.... [tags: insecurity, moral, self-respect]
1044 words (3 pages)
- Ready or Not There You Go A Critical Analysis of Tim O Brien’s “On the Rainy River” “On the Rainy River,” Short story by Tim O Brien, tells about his emotional experience inside a fourteen-foot boat, northbound of Minnesota, to the beautiful Canadian waters. O’Brien dissimulates to be strong on the boat, when he is trying to build enough strength to go to war, or escape from going to it and divest everything O’Brien once had. The narrator is stating that some situations limit our chance to make the clear right choice, and theres no right choices in war; O’Brien explains this through ocean Imagery, language and setting.... [tags: Vietnam War, Vietnam, Fish, Richard Nixon]
1079 words (3.1 pages)
- Tim O’Brien, the author of The Things They Carried, is still undecided of whether to doge the draft and lose the respect of his family and friends, or go to the Vietnam War and lose his life, in the chapter “On The Rainy River”. Elroy’s actions reveal his good qualities that help Tim make this important decision, without any words of judgment or criticism. Elroy’s actions reveal heroic qualities. He is a silent Observer who helps Tim overcome his fears. When Tim decided to leave his hometown of Worthington, Minnesota and drive almost five hundred miles to International Falls, Minnesota, he was unsure of what he was really doing.... [tags: The Things They Carried Essays]
807 words (2.3 pages)
- War Is Hell Throughout all of history, humans have been unable to maintain peace and have always resorted to the inevitable state of war. War has changed of lives of every person who has every lived, and will continue to do so as man struggles to fight the survival of the fittest. Millions of innocent people have literally been the casualties to the idea of war, and billions have had there lives changes forever. Every day people watch movies, read books, and hear reports of war in the media, but how can one ever truly understand what war is without being forced to takes the lives of fellow humans, while at the same time learning to cope with living conditions, being in completely unknown pla... [tags: Tim O'Brien War Analysis]
1384 words (4 pages)