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Comparing War In 'Spin And Tim O' Brien's Spin

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“Not bloody stories, necessarily. Happy stories, too, and even a few peace stories” (33) makes the war what it is. Although war is labeled as pessimistic among society, it actually has ups with its downs such as life itself, these positive feelings and values positioned in the negative whole can both be seen in Brendan Hoffman’s photograph and Tim O’Brien’s short story “Spin” by looking at soldiers’ behaviors.
Both in the story “Spin” and in the photograph, innocent and childish attitudes a soldier may carry are pointed out which reflects and creates the sweetness of war. In the story, O’Brien points out that they were guided by an old poppa-san through the mine fields each morning; during these mornings all soldiers “learned to love the
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Consequently, their heart is open to love no matter what happens which shows their innocence, and which emphasizes sweetness of war that can also be understood from the “tears in the old guy’s eyes” just before soldiers leave him. In addition, Rat Kiley makes up a rhyme that every soldier chants while walking; this action bonds soldiers together and is a proof that they still carry their childish and innocent beings inside. The concept that Tim O’Brien phrases as “The war wasn’t all terror and violence. Sometimes things could almost get sweet” (31) is also seen in Brendan Hoffman’s photograph; soldiers at the front are playing football while smiling sincerely. This childish attitude of soldiers may prove that war can “almost get sweet”. Another dominant part of the photo is the winter and freezing cold; when war and winter is thought, the usual view would be people bleeding and crying and freezing in the cold. In this photo, however, trees create a serene…show more content…
In the photo, soldiers are playing football because a ceasefire is announced, so the smile in their faces can be considered as a way of celebration. Soldiers in the photo “knew where [they] stood” (31) and “knew the score” (31), in contrary, soldiers in the story don’t know if they are winning or losing, they don’t know what is happening outside and they don’t know when all this will end. They still are able to make the war sweet, because in addition to their childish attitudes, they had “the kind of boredom that caused stomach disorders” (33). In order to find another occupation, for instance, all soldiers were watching Norman Bowker and Henry Dobbins playing checkers which was “a ritual for them” (31). While soldiers in the photo was celebrating the ceasefire by playing football, soldiers in the story played checkers and chanted the rhymes to be occupied and to not get crazy due to boredom or not knowing what is happening at the
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