Jimmy was thinking of Martha the whole time. The narrator illustrates a war fiction about soldiers of the Alpha Company, battling the current and long duration effects of the Vietnam War. Subsequent chapters often call details of preceding ones into question, but they also repeat core details and themes, strengthening the sense of underlying truths while calling the order of events into question weight The book opens with descriptions of the physical and emotional baggage that each of the men carries with him through Vietnam; the narrator mentions the specific weight of every item, and how the men decide whether an object is worth its weight in the feeling of safety it provides. Ted Lavender was one of the soldiers in the platoon. You get a deeper understanding of war and how writing can help or hurt the reader. The many references to excrement portray the filthy conditions in which the soldiers live, but they also symbolize the vulgarity of war.
Backpack Literature An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing. And then afterward, when you go to tell about it, there is always that surreal seemingness, which makes the story seem untrue, but which in fact represents the hard and exact truth as it seemed. At the beginning, the pearl itself obviously. He re-emerges with a new outlook, finally having freed himself from the shackles of bitterness. Another symbol in the work is Elroy Berdahl. This is brought through in vivid detail about his obsession, a girl from back home named Martha. By including himself in the work, O'Brien blurs the line between fiction and reality.
His relationship with his hometown. The reader has a chance to develop curiosity for the depth of each character presented and is not instantly alienated by the war setting. He also describes Curt Lemon's violent death in terms of waste. Would I still feel the same way about sharks and the ocean? He is the platoon leader, and the man that should always be the most reliable, but he is not at all. However, their identities are challenged again and again during the course of war. The narrator observes that all the men carry ghosts with them, since they have killed others and witnessed men die. However, callousness varies, whether they chose to be apathetic, like Tim shows us after his grenade episode.
The emotional weight carried by Cross symbolized the trauma he is feeling during the war. The field took away his friend, his innocence, self-worth, and hope. The old rules are no longer binding, the old truths no longer true. It can be said the guilt has changed the way they will carry themselves for the rest of their lives. Themes Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. War is very stressful and can easily become more than one can handle. Though he knows things will continue to be difficult, Cross appears to have accepted that as an officer, he is responsible for his men.
There are a lot of apparent themes that are dealt with when writing a story about war, especially about death. Despite being war heroes, as people often assume soldiers are, such symbols allow them appear as unique individuals with evolving personalities. Point of View The story is told either from the perspective of a narrator or First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross. Some symbols are more discreetly hidden than others, and some are out in the open and should be able to be picked up by a competent reader. Such dire circumstances may provoke in an average person feelings of extreme vulnerability, and the desire to hold on to all that he can, not unlike a child's instinct to grasp the nearest object in his search for comfort while in the throes of anxiety.
It relates how soldiers use different kinds of items to make themselves fell secure in the time of war. After reading these stories I gathered that it would be best to compare and contrast the following elements of literature; writing style, mood, and symbolism. When one of his friends got killed during action he got rid of the pebble because he thought it was a distraction. The darkness also represents the gruesome reality of the war. As I started reading I thought I was not going to have any interest at all in the story; however after I got into the story I found myself more interested than I thought I was going to be. A motif closely related to the vapor and haze is ghosts. When Timmy and Linda go on their date together, they see a war movie, establishing a connection between the two.
The awesome magnitude of the other intangible burdens shows an important underlying message. He sleeps with them like a security blanket, and they 'keep him safe. One character--Norman Bowker--is so overcome by the muck and its stench that he abandons his comrade, Kiowa. They are a good luck charm from his girlfriend back home. The story deals with a Cuban fisherman, down on his luck, and his supreme three-day ordeal, which is a relentless, agonizing battle with a giant marlin far out.
When a fire will be set. Taken from his collection of the same name the story is narrated in the third person and after first reading the story the reader becomes aware of the significance of the title of the story. The emblem of the thumb represents the emotional and psychological changes that the men undergo up every hill and through the swamps. In the literal sense O'Brien talks about what different members of a platoon in Vietnam carried. For example, when Ted Lavender died, Jimmy Cross started thinking about Martha. The platoon would follow Lieutenant Jimmy Cross across the hills, valleys, swamps, rivers, mountains, and everything else you could imagine. O'Brien calls the battlefield 'a goddamn shit field.
This leads to a greater understanding of attaching too closely to a physical item when there is a superior problem at stake, a war and men that need to be protected and comforted. All he wanted was someone to listen to what he had to say and listen to his stories. O'Brien names his book The Things They Carried after the objects that the soldiers in his platoon have to carry on their backs. The physical burden carried by each man underscores the emotional burden. Eventually, he shifts from tangible, physical objects, to intangible, psychological burdens. The narrator describes scenes in which his platoon struggled to find their way in a thick tangle of woods.
The darkness contributes to his psychological deterioration amidst the trauma of war. The overall method of presentation of this story incorporated many different outlooks on the things the soldiers carried, dealt with, and were forced to adapt to. Fire is some- thing which is dangerous. The narrator describes the muck as an overpowering filth. The events of the war and the eerie silence of the mountain jungles have a hypnotic effect on the young teenager. In this short story the narrator wanted to express the loneliness the soldiers felt and distressed because of the lives lost in this War was catastrophic.