Tim O’Brien is very descriptive with his story, He is very direct and very good at telling a war story to make it more interesting. I can imagine myself in the story when I read it. By the way he wrote his book, I can tell that the book itself reflects all the characters’ fear, passions, necessities, and personalities, but mostly it reflects his. For example in chapter seven, “How to Tell a True War Story”, Tim says
In the chapter, How to Tell a True War Story, he emphasizes this a lot. “In many cases a true war story cannot be believed. If you believe it, be skeptical. It’s a question of credibility. Often the crazy stuff is true and the normal stuff isn't, because the normal stuff is necessary to make you believe the truly incredible craziness.” (page 68). This is why Tim O’Brien writes the way he does. He wants the reader to believe his story and get a sense of what war is truly
Regret is a powerful emotion that has the ability to scar someone for the rest of their life. Moments of regret can come from relationships, self-made decisions and life changing events. The idea of regret also applies to “A Marker on the Side of the Boat” by Bao Ninh and “On the Rainy River” by Tim O’Brien. Although these two literary pieces are very different in many ways, both authors describe the experience of the Vietnam War as a time of regretful decisions that negatively impacted people of both the American side and the Vietnamese side. Both authors tell a story about a character that recalls of flashbacks of the war, where they grieve over the past decisions that have affected them for the rest of their life.
Through reading The Things They Carried, it was easy to feel connected to the characters; to feel their sorrow, confusion, and pain. O’Briens ability to make his readers feel as though they are actually there in the war zones with him is a unique ability that not every author possess. War was so much more than just war to O’Brien and he able to share this through his writing. "But this is true: stories can save us. ... in a story, which is a kind of dreaming, the dead sometimes smile and sit up and return to the world." (page
Right from the first few sentences the author already starts to impress. There is a mix between the writer 's memoir and autobiography. With a memoir a writer will usually recount scenes from his or her own life. The way the writer writes depends on the conditions of the mental and emotional for the writer. When he starts off saying that "this is one story I 've never told before" signals two points to the reader. First, the story builds a confessional tone and creates an immediate empathy between the reader and the O 'Brien character. Second, in the context of the next chapter, the reader knows that this is an unresolved story, perhaps a fragment of memory that, given O 'Brien 's attitude of storytelling, is being crafted into a story as a means for understanding the events of the past. But the story isn 't abruptly moving
Robert E. Lee once said, “What a cruel thing war is… to fill our hearts with hatred instead of love for our neighbors”. The novel The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien takes place in Vietnam. He and a handful of other men experience things only one can image and hope they will never have to experience again. They learn how death among them can greatly affect them, and many others. War is not an easy task to get through and these men all had different coping methods. O’Briens intended audience is people who have an interest in war, and uses mortality and death, along with morality to help the audience get a deeper understanding of what could possibly occur at war.
This chapter also contain a lot of psychological lens. From the way Tim O’Brien felt when he was shot and separated from his unit to a new unit to when he wanted revenge on Bobby Jorgenson for almost “killing” him. The chapter also showed how the war shaped and changed the way Tim O’Brien thought and dealt with things.
“Every war is ironic because every war is worse than expected,” Paul Fussell wrote in “The Great War and Modern Memory,” his classic study of the English literature of the First World War. “But the Great War was more ironic than any before or since.” The ancient verities of honor and glory were still standing in 1914 when England’s soldier-poets marched off to fight in France. Those young men became modern through the experience of trench warfare, if not in the forms they used to describe it. It was Yeats, Pound, Eliot, Joyce, and Lawrence who invented literary modernism while sitting out the war. Robert Graves, Siegfried Sassoon, Edmund Blunden, Isaac Rosenberg, and Wilfred Owen—who all fought in the trenches and, in the last two cases, died
In the short story, “The Man I Killed,” O’Brien focuses on this to show that everyone fighting in a war has a story. He spends the story describing the man he killed and searching for justification of his actions. He carries around guilt with him because of it, and his fellow soldiers try to help him justify and come to terms with his action by saying things like, “You want to trade places with him? Turn it all upside down= you want that? I mean, be honest,” (126) and “Tim, it’s a war. The guy wasn’t Heidi- he has a weapon, right?” (126) However, by giving insight on the man’s life, the reader learns that similarly to O’Brien, the man he killed originally had no intention of fighting. He wanted to be a scholar. The collections of short stories in “The Things They Carried” come together to show how complex war can be. It is not black and white, especially since soldiers are dealing with heavy issues and people are dying all around
We can all agree that war is dreadful. The impact to citizens and soldiers during times of war is significant and widespread. The fictional works: The Shawl, The Red Convertible and The Things They Carried, allow insight into the impact that war has on individuals. Although these stories are works of fiction, they all resonate real struggle and unbearable circumstances. Throughout these stories, the characters are continually impacted by their surrounding circumstances. These master works of war torn fiction, allow the reader to experience the impact war infuses on soldiers and citizens alike. Through powerful narration, these stories reveal how their characters are impacted physically, emotionally and psychologically by the war that surrounds
Lots of stories are hard to comprehend because they’re more brutal and traumatic for listeners, even the story-teller. In three stories: “The Man I Killed”, “How To Tell A True War Story”, and “Speaking of Courage”, Tim O’Brien showed how changing certain parts of a story and making them graceful, can make them easier to comprehend. However sometimes telling the story the way it was makes it brutal and gruesome, though some listeners prefer that over gracefulness. Telling a true war story can be hard to do, because soldiers are tempted to change some traumatic aspects to make the story easier to comprehend, and not so traumatic for the listener.
Hidden somewhere within the blurred lines of fiction and reality, lies a great war story trapped in the mind of a veteran. On a day to day basis, most are not willing to murder someone, but in the Vietnam War, America’s youth population was forced to after being pulled in by the draft. Author Tim O’Brien expertly blends the lines between fiction, reality, and their effects on psychological viewpoints in the series of short stories embedded within his novel, The Things They Carried. He forces the reader to rethink the purpose of storytelling and breaks down not only what it means to be human, but how mortality and experience influence the way we see our world. In general, he attempts to question why we choose to tell the stories in the way we
We as humans find conflict to be rash and futile, but to the soldiers that fight for our freedom, it is an honor and a privilege, but it is dreadful nonetheless. We are going to be discussing Tim O'Brien's intentions in writing the short story “Where Have You Gone Charming Billy.” It is my understanding that he wrote the story to tell us about war as it is hard to imagine its entirety and that war takes lives. Finally, I believe that he wants us to see how dangerous and terrifying war really is. So let’s explore this complication.
The short stories he writes center on the importance of companionship and friendship during war, which very well may be first hand accounts since O’Brien knows what it is like to actually be in a war. The stories are narrated by a character named Tim O’Brien, a character with a fictional past named after the author and modeled after his experiences. Tim begins the story by telling the reader what each soldier packs with them to help them ease anxiety or remember home while the group marches, which is inspiration for the title. In this beginning chapter, Tim introduces the reader to each character, and most of the characters introduced in this first chapter will have stories that are focused on them or that they appear in later on in the book. The first chapter will introduce the backstory of many of O’Brien’s closest friends during the war, young soldiers like Kiowa, Lieutenant Cross, and Mitchell Sanders. These are some of the characters that O’Brien grows a strong friendship with and they contribute to the main theme of the book, friendship, in that they help him through tough times and they all learn to care about one another.
This technique is supported when he includes Rat Kileys narration in his story, while all at once, allowing the reader to understand that Kiley is known for embellishing. “The question is not of deceit. Just the opposite: he wanted to heat up the truth, to make it burn so hot that you would feel exactly what he felt” (Kaplan 5/8). By O’Brien allowing Kiley to express his view of the war, he further sustains the writing technique used to reinforce the belief that with numerous narrations, he provides the audience the opportunity to depict and imagine their own reality of the war. The war stories told through each individual soldier’s perspective, but more significantly, with their own emotions towards the war and the events which occurred during the war. O’Brien writes, “You can tell a true war story by its absolute and uncompromising allegiance to obscenity and evil” (76). Regardless of the changes within the narrations, the fact remains, that these soldiers are in the middle of battle and the emotion that follows differ for each person. As Kaplan states in his writing, “the most important thing is to be able to recognize and accept that events have no fixed and final meaning and that the only meaning that events can have is one that emerges momentarily and then shifts and changes each time that the events come alive as they are remembered or portrayed”