How Does Tim O Brien Use Literary Criticism

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The author, Tim O'Brien, uses a variety of criticism throughout his work. One of the main types is historical; as well as romantic in his short story. By referencing World War 2, Vietnam, and his love for Martha; O’Brien relates to these criticisms through his main character. The war setting of this story plays a large part in analyzation. By presenting Lieutenant Jimmy Cross, the main character, in world War 2 gives the reader knowledge of the time period the many characters are placed into. The display of affection for Martha is a powerful figure for Jimmy. He dreams of being with her even though she's clueless of his love for her. By applying the past and present to his story he intertwines romanticism and history. He also introduces a social …show more content…

This story tells of the exaggerated facts of the Vietnam War through the eyes of a foot soldier. He combines the work of fiction and nonfiction to bring attention to certain details the audience may use to decipher the characters personalities. His historical take on the war and the isolation of soldiers gives O’Brien’s view on an American soldier's life. O’Brien is a Vietnam War veteran and plays off his many experiences; but even though he uses primary information, the reader still receives a doubt of what is true and what is false. The lack of glory and pride in the story can be referenced back to Jimmy’s social status back at home. His status is a reflection of Marxist criticism; even though he is a leader of his platoon, he still cannot have the girl of his dreams back home. His social status in Alpha Company is high while his pre-war status is …show more content…

For Lieutenant Jimmy Cross, he carries the responsibility for the lives of the men who follow him. This is a type of Marxist criticism; Jimmy carries the burden of a leader, he is higher ranked than others in his platoon. They all look up to his leadership and orders. In the short story, the Lieutenant focuses on his love and fantasies of Martha, resulting in the death of one of his men. He feels the guilt of it all, and can not stop thinking of Martha. Martha is his distraction; she is seen as a proper woman by Jimmy, who does not return his love. He regrets his pre-war choices and wishes he would have tried to create a relationship between himself and Martha. This regret is reflected in both Jimmy’s life and Tim’s life. Tim regrets his choices 20 years after he was part of the Vietnam War; just as Jimmy regrets his own past decisions 20 years after he has returned home. Jimmy tries to have a relationship with Martha upon his return, but is rejected and has lost his chance with her; the same as O’Brien cannot change his own

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