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Comparative Essay The Things They Carried

Character Comparison in Tim O'Brien's "The Things They Carried"

553 Words3 Pages

The central theme of the story is the age-old conflict of life and death. On a more personal level with First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross, the round character and protagonist of "The Things They Carried", it is a conflict of love, his antagonist and of war.

The author, Tim O'Brien, is writing about an experience of a tour in the Vietnam conflict. This short story deals with inner conflicts of some individual soldiers and how they chose to deal with the realities of the Vietnam conflict, each in their own individual way as men, as soldiers.

There were certain items or supplies that each soldier needed to possess that aided in their survival. Other items were discretionary or optional, not entirely important for the…show more content…

The only distinct change that he goes through is a change from being alive to being dead. He does not know he has changed. I believe that this is a form of dramatic irony. The feeling of being scared to die is Lavender's antagonist.

Kiowa, it would seem was Indian, conceivably, Kiowa. He carried an illustrated New Testament, given to him by his father, a Sunday school teacher. On night missions he carried moccasins, for silence. He also carried his grandfather's feathered hatchet and his grandmother's distrust of the white man. Kiowa was also a very religious Baptist. I think that Kiowa would be defined as a stock character.

I, maybe wrong, but I believe that is stereotypical to correlate Indians with hatchets, war, feathers, moccasins and the dislike or distrust of the white man. I do not think it is in distaste when Indians are described like this. Perhaps it is done out of respect or with awe, for a culture with warrior pride, traditions and beliefs.

Perhaps this is why Kiowa could not feel for Lavender the same way that Lt. Cross seemed to be grieving for him. As a warrior, Kiowa knows that life is fragile and death is to be met. Maybe seeing Lavender die, while zipping up was an eye opener for the Native, showing him that death can be lurking around the corner, not only in combat but anywhere.

I do not see any antagonists for Kiowa. He may be described as one of the strongest characters in the story. Oppositely,

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Comparison of the Vietnam War and in The Things They Carried Essay

1792 Words8 Pages

In the twentieth century many young adults and many other men were chosen/ drafted to enter the war. The Vietnam War started during the time period of 1959 and this brutal war ended on 1975. It started with the United States sending aid and military advisors to the Southern part Vietnam. The U.S helped the southerners of Vietnam because the northern part of Viet was a communist state so the south wanted to end Communism up in the north. Also, this war was said to be one of the bloodiest wars that took place in the twentieth century. It was a very bloody war because more than 58,000 American soldiers had perished in combat. Also, during the decade of direct U.S Military participation in Vietnam, during early time of the year, 1964 the U.S…show more content…

In the twentieth century many young adults and many other men were chosen/ drafted to enter the war. The Vietnam War started during the time period of 1959 and this brutal war ended on 1975. It started with the United States sending aid and military advisors to the Southern part Vietnam. The U.S helped the southerners of Vietnam because the northern part of Viet was a communist state so the south wanted to end Communism up in the north. Also, this war was said to be one of the bloodiest wars that took place in the twentieth century. It was a very bloody war because more than 58,000 American soldiers had perished in combat. Also, during the decade of direct U.S Military participation in Vietnam, during early time of the year, 1964 the U.S treasury spent over 140 billion dollars on this war. “This was enough money to fund urban projects in every major American city” (history.com). As this war effected the American’s, it affected the Vietnamese people to. This war affected both the American’s and the Vietnamese, because in the year of 1973 the United States began withdrawing troops. This caused the South Vietnamese capital of Saigon to fall to the Northern Vietnamese forces. Just like how the war was long and bloody many characters from the novel The Things They Carried experienced many things that were relatable to people who in reality dealt with the war. The very brutality of war cause indelible psychological and emotional changes in most of its participants. Three main

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