Things They Carried Rhetorical Analysis Essay

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In the novel, The Things They Carried, by Tim O’Brien, the author describes a platoon marching through Vietnam at the time of the Vietnamese War. He does so by describing in detail the items that each of the men carry with them during their march. The things that the soldiers carry with them are not only tangible but intangible items as well, and what these things are depend fully upon each individual soldier. They carry Military Payment Certificates, the basic "necessities" for survival along with the bare minimum to make life as livable as possible during the time of war. The men decided on the items they wished to carry with them depending completely on their habits and rate of metabolism. However, they also carry emotions, such as love and fear, memories, and grief. It is intangible items like these that …show more content…

This brings focus specifically to the things the men are carrying, both tangible and intangible, without deemphasizing the narration. O'Brien gives only straight forward descriptions in these sections and the writing is nugatory of any feeling or sentiment whatsoever. On the other hand, when describing the intangible items, the writing is automatically perceived as more in tune with the emotions of the characters in the novel. The author's writing tends to be taking more sentimentality in these segments and adds a great deal of emotional weight for the reader. The soldiers all clearly want to escape the reality of what is going on around them in the war. Fantasy, for one, represents the setting through the love letters that Lieutenant Cross carries. Also, everything that the men carried showed what kind of person that they were. The things that they carried defined what kind of person that they were as well as their status or position in the army and they showed the reality of the

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