Soldiers Home Symbolism

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“Soldiers Home” by Ernest Hemingway and “Speaking of Courage” by Tim O’Brien both deal with the difficulties of veterans returning home from war. Both of the protagonists, Krebs and Bowker respectively, experience trauma, which leads them on a search for self-discovery and an outlet for their pain. At the end of each story, neither of the characters wants to participate in society anymore. Despite the similarities, Norman Bowker is more forthcoming with his feelings, ultimately making him a more successful character. In addition, the similarities and differences between the authors’ styles accentuate those that occur within the characters of the stories; both authors use symbolism to show the changes in the dynamic characters over the course of the narratives. Hemingway begins Krebs’ story in a Methodist college in Kansas when the war starts off in 1917. When the war ends Krebs chose to stay in Germany for the next six months and when he comes back he realizes that the town moved on about the war and didn’t get the welcome he thought he deserved. This leads to the theme of not being able to find an outlet for pain. He wanted people to listen to his stories so they would be able to see the pain of what he went through throughout the war and the heroic actions he accomplished while fighting…show more content…
The car in ‘Soldiers Home” shows the change in Krebs by showing how he was before and after the war. Before the war he wanted to drive and be more active and have a life after he chose to be lazy and not be part of his life like wanting to drive. “Speaking of Courage” starts the book around the lake and is told throughout the the whole of the story. The lake symbolizes the past and how it revolves around in his life still and helps him reflect on the future and how he wants to keep moving in his
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