What Is The Theme Of Sweetheart Of The Song Tra Bong

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In the story “Sweetheart of the Song Tra Bong” by Tim O’Brien, Mary Anne Bell represents the idealistic view of women which is slowly corrupted by the war. Explaining O’Brien’s commentary on how the war corrupts the youth, marking them whether it is negatively or positively.
In the beginning of the story, Mary Anne Bell is presented as an attractive girl from a small town, she had terrific legs, a bubbly personality, and a happy smile; therefore, she is the stereotypical girl next door. Her arrival in Vietnam roots from her boyfriend Mark Fosee, bringing her after a comment from one of the fellow soldiers. Mary and Mark are a wholesome couple that dream of getting married and living the American dream. However, Mary possesses an important …show more content…

Never.” Mary Anne’s newly found love for the war, made her happy. Here the author suggests that she is slowly letting go of her idealistic view of one day getting married and living the American dream. Consequently, this is fortified by the night she disappears. Because she is an attractive woman in a camp full of men, her partner Mark immediately thinks she is being unfaithful. However, Mary had participated in an ambush and returns completely different, the war has reached her core and is now seamlessly changing the innerworkings of her being. Afterwards, Mark tries to grasp at the last bits of her ideals and officially announces they are to get married. She returns to wearing clean clothes, to wash her hair and talk happily about her future wedding plans. However, this is no longer who she is, all the old aspects of her personality were perceived as forced, evidenced by the following lines: “Over the next several days there was a strained, tightly wound quality to the way they treated each other, a rigid correctness that was enforced by repetitive acts of willpower.” The last strands of her idealistic world view were not enough to retain her from her new form of being. Her ambition towards the American dream, no longer made her happy. In order to complete her new ambition, she had to let go. Therefore, she left

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