Referring Within Tim O Brien's The Things They Carried

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Tim O’Brien, a Vietnam war veteran, is a famous author. One of his most famous books is “The things they carried.” Tim O’Brien has been able to achieve success in his writings due to his writings being based on actual events that happened while he served. Another reason his writings are so successful is how he immerses the reader into his stories using common military jargon, how he describes events and people within his stories. Due to him being in the military for a few years, Tim O’Brien has received a lot of influence for his writing, he has elements that make his writing unique, and how Tim O'Brien's stories have an overarching theme of death.
The major factor that influenced Tim O’Brien’s writing is the fact that he was in Vietnam. Referring …show more content…

In his book “The Thing They Carried” he shows not only the tangible objects they carry such as; canteen, ammo, rations, etc, but also the non tangible and psychological things that all soldiers carry. The major psychological issue that the soldiers carry on their shoulders is death. (An example is from one of his short stories, “How to tell a true war story,” a character named Rat Kiley loses his best friend Curt Lemon to an explosive trap. Rat Kiley carries the death of his best friend on his shoulders and even slaughters an innocent animal due to him not having control over himself. Another example, is from his story “the things they carried.” A Lieutenant, named Jimmy Cross: carries the death of a fellow soldier who was shot upon returning from the bathroom. At the time of the incident, Jimmy Cross was thinking of a girl named Martha wondering if she was truly a virgin. In the story Tim O’Brien shows how Cross deals with the death of Ted Lavender by stating, “He felt shame. He hated himself. He had loved martha more than his men… Lavender was now dead… this was something he would have to carry like a stone for the rest of the war.” As more soldiers die it becomes more “stones” that the soldiers must carry. ) Tim O’brien incorporates a theme of death, which is something that a lot of soldiers must carry with them. Whether its is the the fear of them dying or carrying the death of a fellow solider on their shoulders, the thought of death is something that is real and that Tim O’Brien wants to incorporate within his

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