Courage In The Things They Carried

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Courage The dictionary definition of courage is “strength in the face of pain of grief.” Throughout the novel The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien, the common idea of courage is expressed with different meanings as each character interprets courage differently. Within Tim O’Brien’s novel, each character has a different idea as to what courage truly means. In the short story “On The Rainy River,” Tim faces the moral decision of whether or not to join the war. Being the stubborn man he is, Tim believes he is too good for the war, all the while opposing war in his liberal nature. He faces a dilemma in which he can either flee to Canada and evade the war, or accept his draft notice and go to war. This is illustrated as Tim states “Right then,…show more content…
Curt Lemons could handle any war scenario that was thrown at him, however, he hated going to the dentist. When the whole platoon went in for a routine checkup, Curt became overwhelmed and fainted instantly. This tore him apart on this inside as he believed this act was cowardly, as a man should have no problem seeing a dentist. To verify his courage, Curt goes back to the dentist and gets a perfectly good tooth pulled out. This idea of courage that Curt has isn’t real courage, but rather courage as to not look foolish. It doesn’t actually display bravery, but rather a confused idea of courage that Tim incorprates throughout his novel. In summation, Tim O’Brien exercises what courage truly means throughout his novel The Things They Carried. He seems to come to a consensus that there truly is no singular meaning to courage as each and every person can interpret it differently. Tim O’Brien’s does an astonishing job exhibiting to the reader what courage truly is and the innumerable ways in which it can be
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