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The things they carried
Transcript of The things they carried
"Tim O'Brien, Author of
The Things They Carried
, Going After Cacciato, and In the Lake of the Woods." Tim O'Brien, Author of The Things They Carried, Going After Cacciato, and In the Lake of the Woods. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.illyria.com/tobhp.html>.
By: Kristen David
The Things They Carried
What makes a character good?
What makes a character good is when you give them an interesting personality and if you make them unique with their dialogue and their actions.
My Final Print
Born in Austin, Minnesota on October 1, 1946
-He is the first of three children
-Describes himself as an avid reader as a child
-O'Brien was drafted on August 14, 1968 and was sent to Army basic training at Fort Lewis, Washington.
-He completed his undergraduate degree at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota.
-O'Brien was an excellent student and earned a bachelor's degree in government and politics.
-Served in the US Army during Vietnam War
-Won a Purple Heart Award in 1970.
-Became a reporter for the "Washington Post" from 1971-1974
-O'Brien's first work was
If I Die in a Combat Zone
-Won the James Fenimore Cooper Prize (best historical fiction) in 1995 for In the Lake of the Woods
-Most recently won the "Dayton Literary Peace Prize's Lifetime Achievement Award" in 2012
"The Things They Carried By Tim O'Brien Tim O'Brien Biography."
The Things They Carried
: Tim O'Brien Biography</. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013. <http://www.cliffsnotes.com/literature/t/the-things-they-carried/tim-obrien-biography>.
This story is based around the Vietnam War. It is a collection of short stories based on different characters and their feelings about the war or simply their own internal conflicts. As we read we learn more about each characters life and reason for them ending up in the war. Throughout the chapters we ultimately learn more about the characters from the things they physically carried and the reason they carry the objects with them on the battle field.
Tim O'Brien gets a draft letter in the summer of 1968. Instead of going with his first thought and moving to Canada he decides to stay and fulfill his duty of fighting for his country. He thinks it will be less a
embarrassing to his pride and with get him more respect than simply running away.
O'Brien and his fellow troops must deal with a death very close to their hearts. O'Brien's best friend has died and he must try to move past the pain and hurt of the tragedy. Now he has to start a new beginning of his life in Kiowa's honor.
After Tim has returned home he must now face the past and attempt to push to the future. In order to do this he must cope with the past and be able to fully accept what happened was no ones fault.
When the war ends Tim has a reflection over his life and wonders how different it would have been if he never went into the war. Nevertheless he honors all his fallen soldiers as well as his fallen friends.
The main theme that is echoed throughout the book it courage. At the beginning Tim didn't have enough courage to even consider going to war. As Tim and his friends begin their journey in the war they actually end up finding the courage deep inside of them to push on.
"They carried all of the emotional baggage of men who might die. Grief, terror, love. longing-these were intangibles, but the intangibles had their own mass and specific gravity, they had tangible weight."
Personally, I feel like this excerpt simply summed up the book. It explains that not only did the soldiers carry the weight and stress of possibly being killed in battle, they also had extra baggage. Some included grief of dealing with the many deaths that were associated with war. Terror was a major set of baggage. The soldiers feared not being able to make it back home to their families. The last burden was love, old relationships were put on pause because of the war others were saved now that the couples were apart from one another. But, all of this baggage was added to the already struggle of being at war.
I would definitely recommend this book to a classmate. Not only did Mr.O'Brien give us one remarkable story of a soldier's struggles at war, he gave us several autobiographies. Each character comes with their own set of problems so you can choose the one you want to compare your life story with. The author creates vivid images that make you feel as if you were standing beside the characters on the battlefield. This book is a must read for anyone in high school and above.