Essay about The Things They Carried By Tim O ' Brien

Essay about The Things They Carried By Tim O ' Brien

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In the stories, The Things They Carried and How to Tell a True War Story, by Tim O’Brien, every character in the story has his own unique theme in the story. Some are simple like Ted Lavender, his theme is drugs cannot solve your problems, but other characters such as Rat Kiley and Lieutenant Jimmy Cross have much more deep themes, and the narrator of the story finds a new outlook on life in one of the worst places to be at this time. This story takes place during the Vietnam war, a war many American Soldiers have trouble admitting that they took place in. During this story this platoon of men come to terms with death, love, and depression. These men overcome adversity in Vietnam to rethink their life before the war and find new values in life from their experiences. The experiences that the men in endure during this story justify the physical and thematic changes that each soldiers go through, the experiences of war and violence that the soldiers witnessed had an impact on shaping these changes that occurred.
Several of the men in the story go through extreme changes in the duration of the story, most of the change comes from the characters near the end of the story after the death of Tim Lavender which proved to be one of the major casualties in the story that begin to shape the outlook of life the soldiers had. Lieutenant Cross spends most of the story thinking about Martha instead of the survival of himself and his platoon. After Lavender dies, Cross realizes that the fate of the other men were in his hands and that he had to abandon his thoughts of Martha and focus on keeping everyone alive. “He was realistic about it. There was that new hardness in his stomach. No more fantasies, he told himself (O’Brien1149).” After burni...


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...icable in real life as it was in the story. These three characters in the this story realize the hard way how warfare and violence can shape a person’s perspective on life. Each character experience death first hand through the deaths of their comrades and realize how important that life is. This is what Tim O’Brien’s character realizes from his experience during Vietnam that you cannot control the things that happen, like being drafted to a war you do not support, but you just have to go as life takes you and make the most out of the situation as much as you can. “And in the end, of course, a true war story is never about war. It’s about sunlight. it’s about the special way that dawn spreads out on a river when you know you must cross the river and march into the mountains and do things ou are afraid to do. it’s about love and memory. It’s about sorrow.(O’Brien1159)”

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