Conformity In On The Rainy River 'By Tim O' Brien

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‘’I was a coward. I went to the war’’ Pg187. In the short story, ‘’On The Rainy River’’ by Tim O’Brien, The protagonist faces a difficult life decision, he did not want to conform to society the way others wanted him to. He wanted to keep his personal beliefs. Tim O’Brien does not want to conform no matter how vital it is that he should. If he does not conform, he will lose everything including his personal beliefs, on the contrary, if he does conform he risks his life. Conforming in any way, shape or form has consequences, usually ending with losing something. Tim realizes this when he has to chose between himself and others. This could also be a form of peer pressure. Tim has a desire to live a normal life; work and play, a family someday, …show more content…

The letter stated that he was now being drafted to fight in the Vietnam war, he was devastated. His initial thought was to run to Canada. ‘’At some point in mid July I began thinking seriously about Canada.’’ Pg 175. All he could think was, why should I fight in a war that I don't believe in ‘’ I was too good for this war--- I was above it’’ Pg 173. He thought about the idea of Canada more and more, and he did it, he fled. ‘’ I drove North.’’ Pg 177 , he followed the Rainy River all the way to ‘’an old fishing resort called the Tip Top lodge’’. Pg 178. At this lodge he met an older gentlemen named Elroy Berdahl, Tim had spent a total of 6 days at this lodge, where he learnt a lot about himself, Throughout the stay, Elroy never asked much about Tim; where he had come from, what he was running from, anything about his family. On the last day, Elroy had taken him out to go ‘’fishing’’ where they crossed the Canadian border, here is where Tim lost himself briefly, He thought about jumping and swimming across, He looked for reassurance, thinking ‘’ What would you do, would you jump?’’ He did this in his head but acted like he was talking to a different person. He then visioned his family and how they opposed what he was doing, his friends and future family as well. This is the major turning point in the

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