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The Things They Carried Prezi

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Austin Montgomery

on 6 May 2013

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Transcript of The Things They Carried Prezi

By: Tim O'Brien The Things They Carried Who is Tim O'Brien? -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 Tim O'Brien's Career -Tim O'Brien describes him and his squad making their way through Vietnam during the war.
-He tells his story through a series of short stories, which occur at different time periods.
-Each story has a different meaning, usually relating to the things they carried.
-They travel from village to village, encountering different things along the way.
-Troops in O'Brien's platoon continue to die, and he describes how he and the surviving troops cope with their deaths. Summary of the Book -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. Themes : Courage Themes: The Things They Carried -Once in Vietnam the whole aspect of courage comes into place.
-O'Brien and/or his troops know that they could die at any minute of any day.
-They had to be courageous even after members of their platoon have fallen
-At one point in the book, O'Brien had to build up enough courage to kill a Vietcong soldier Themes: Immature Words Soldiers would use words like "zapped" or "offed" when another died.

Using these phrases took some of the bad feelings away by making each death seem common

This tactic would help the soldiers move on quickly and forget about someone that was very close to them for the time being -The troops carried various things during their trek in Vietnam. However, you could interpret this multiple ways
-Most obviously, they carried what soldiers need to fight in a war-weapons, recon equipment, first aid equipment, etc.
-Another understanding of this theme is the intangibles they carried-memories, pain, love, terror, etc.
"The intangibles had their own mass and specific gravity, they had tangible weight," (O'Brien 21). How The Things They Carried Compares -Tim O'Brien's novel has several similarities with the film "Saving Private Ryan".
-Captain John Miller and a few others took on the challenge of finding Private James Ryan (Tom Hanks), who was reported missing, and returning him to safety.
-Miller and his squad only had "the things they carried" in order to succeed in their mission of saving Private Ryan.
-They were courageous for accepting this challenge without knowing where Ryan was. How The Things They Carried Compares -Tim O'Brien's novel is also comparable to I Am the Messenger by Marcus Zusack
-The two books share a similar writing style: both are written as a sequence of separate short stories
-Both authors wrote their books with a uniform writing style: they write in an aggressive tone, and make their main characters sound very passionate about what they are doing.
-Both books also include immature words (in a different sense) Our Opinion of the Book -Although the book was very well written and about an interesting topic, we felt it was a bit rough transitioning from story to story. This made the book hard to follow and made us a bit confused when continuing to read.
-This book did a great job describing the truths behind war
-We would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of war and not afraid to read about all of the violence and consequences that come along with it. Character Analysis Jimmy Cross -Lieutenant of Alpha Company
-In love with a girl named Martha from NJ: can't stop thinking of her during the war
-Represents what happens when responsibility is not taken seriously
-He believes that he was responsible for the death of his friend, because he was distracted by love.
-Because of this, Cross can also be viewed as a Christ figure
-Throughout the book, he suffers for the entire squad whenever somebody dies
-Right after Ted Lavender dies, he makes a "sacrifice" by burning the pictures of Martha Mitchell Sanders Kiowa Kiowa is a diligent, honest, and compassionate.
He carry's moccasins in order to walk silently and help his fellow soldiers to rationalize their own unfortunate actions
He is a Baptist and a Native American
Kiowa brings a very different persepective to that of his fellow soldiers
The death of Kiowa is very symbolic
senseless tragedy of war
dies in a gruesome way, drowning under the muck of a sewage field
Kiowa's submerged body indicates the not permanent nature of life and the horrifying suddenness with which it can be snatched away.
No dignity to Kiowa's death
becomes another casualty in a war that strips men of their identity and just turns them into statistics Mitchell Sanders is a very likable soldier and a devoted friend.
Has a sense of irony. For example, picking lice off his body and sending them back to his draft board in Ohio
Has a sense of loyalty.
Has a strong sense of justice. When Jimmy Cross leads the troops into the sewage field where Kiowa eventually meets his death, Sanders refuses to forgive him because the evidence shows that he should have known better
Sanders believes that a good war story often lack a moral and that sometimes a story without commentary or explanation speacks for itself becuase he understands that war stories are never simple or cut-and-dried. Works Cited "A Conversation with Tim O'Brien on Writing & War." YouTube. YouTube, 03 Feb. 2011. Web. 26 Apr. 2013.
O'Brien, Tim. New York: Broadway, 1990. Print.
"The Patriot Bookstore - Rare, Used, and Out-of-print Books." The Patriot Bookstore - Rare, Used, and Out-of-print Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Apr. 2013.
"Saving Private Ryan." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 30 Apr. 2013. Web. 27 Apr. 2013.
"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. 25 Apr. 2013.
"Tim O'Brien." Lenape HS Media Center. Biography in Context, n.d. Web. 25 Apr. 2013.
"Tim O'Brien on "The Things They Carried"" YouTube. YouTube, 22 Apr. 2011. Web. 26 Apr. 2013. In "Speaking of Courage," the lake reminds Norman of the disgusting field, which serves as a metaphor for the power to kill.
Norman visualizes everything that had been taken away from him.
His ability to communicate with his friends and parents. His relationship with his hometown. His ambition or motivation to succeed.
Norman is unable to break away form the lake, and is doomed to constantly revolve around it.
When he enters the lake it basically means to take his life as well, and this foreshadows his later suicide. Symbolism Metaphors/Foreshadowing Symbolism Symbolism In the chapter "Field Trip" O'Brien approached the field with the same sentiments, and the outcome came out to be much different
when he returns to the site of Koiwa's death twenty years later, he is suprised to see the field at piece.
O'Brien has a lack of emotion when confronted with the place that has symbolized everything vulgar and violent from his past.
The field took away his friend, his innocence, self-worth, and hope
Enters into the field, it is as a initiation designed to cleanse himself form the ugliness of the war.
Re-emerges with a new outlook, finally having freed himself from the shackles of bitterness. Linda -O’Brien’s nine year old girlfriend who died from a brain tumor.
Like Mary Anne, Linda symbolizes a form of youthful innocence. Or more specifically, she represents the desire to remember things as they once existed, before they were scarred by catastrophe.
When O’Brien dreams of her, the white scalp and scars and bandages are gone.
Writing involves the power to dream something and have the world dream along with you. Mark Fossie’s girlfriend symbolizes everything good about the United State of America. With her pink sweater and skirts, she is the All-American girl.
The chapter “Sweetheart of Song Tra Bong” examines the transformation that occurs when this innocent girl is lifted out of the Cleveland suburbs and plunked down in the mountains of Vietnam. The events of the war and the eerie silence of the mountain jungles have a hypnotic effect on the young teenager.
As she learns how to clamp off arteries and assemble an automatic rifle, she starts to lose the innocence that Mark loves so much about her.
She begins to dress differently and wear less makeup. Eventually, she sheds her youthful dreams of getting married immediately after Mark’s return.
Finally she separates from him completely.
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