Comparing the two versions of this story, which one did you find more compelling, more horrifying? “In many cases,” he writes in his collection of short stories, The Things They Carried, “a true war story cannot be believed.
I would not look. O'Brien never had a choice to no participate, but he feels like he was owed something for his service. He had expected to be afraid, but he also expected that he could command himself to do the right thing and engage in warfare. It feels honest about the numbness and ambivalence of most soldiers fighting an unwinnable war, one in which the enemy was rarely seen and blended in so well with the civilian population. Three of his books, If I Die in a Combat Zone (1973), Going After Cacciato (1978), and The Things They Carried (1990), deal specifically with the Vietnam war. To create our... To see what your friends thought of this book, Since I am finally viewing the Ken Burns Vietnam documentary I have dreaded seeing, I decided to listen to this memoir O'Brien began writing in Nam thru his journal and letters. And lies to cover the lies: Johnson, McNamara, Westmoreland, even Kennedy, just extending the colonialist impulses of the French in that country. Jimmy thought it over and then gave me a little smile. I appreciate this book for showing me what I missed. You can help us out by revising, improving and updating
How is right and wrong determined?
A new concept would be introduced without any explanation, so I couldn't understand why "x" was the effect of "y" happening. This cathartic experience, of putting pen to paper, to try to explain and address h. What an amazing book. This author takes you into his mind, body, and spirit in a way few writers can. What passages in O’Brien’s books support your position? His first book right? And I’m so grateful I did.
While that prevents me from drawing comparisons with other authors writing on the same topic, I’m willing to wager that O’Brien sets a respectably high standard. The goal is survival, not honor. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. An early chapter entitled “Love,” starts this way: “Many years after the war Jimmy Cross came to visit me at my home…and for a full day we drank coffee and smoked cigarettes and talked about everything we had seen and done so long ago, all the things we still carried through our lives…and I decided there was no harm in asking about Martha [whom Jimmy had been in love with].
There have been times when I’ve been reduced to pleading, “But it’s true —you’ve got to believe me! In these pages he loses. He’s close enough to see not just the big wounds, but the “slight tear at the lobe of one ear.” Still staring, O’Brien goes on to imagine what this man was like: a mathematician, a reluctant soldier who, like him, hoped the war would just go away. O’Briens terrifying first hand accounts are beautifully written and feel more real than any pictures or statistics of the war could. Maybe, but they are often novels. Later Johansen and the lieutenant talked about the mechanics of the ambush. But Ted Lavender, who was scared, carried 34 rounds when he was shot and killed outside Than Khe, and he went down under an exceptional burden, more than 20 pounds of ammunition, plus the flak jacket and helmet and rations and water and toilet paper and tranquilizers and all the rest, plus the unweighed fear. Are there any heroes or villains? Though I didn't love this quite as much as "The Things They Carried" (the ultimate Vietnam book IMO), or my all time love "In the Lake of the Woods" (words can't express the adoration I have for that chaotic beautiful mess), If I Die in a Combat Zone is disturbing and painful and written with the clarity and disdain the subject matter deserved. In the documentary we get snippets of the fear, the absurdity, and at times the adrenaline rush of what being a combat soldier in Vietnam felt like.
A few pages later, we read: “I told him that I’d like to write a story about some of this. will review the submission and either publish your submission or provide feedback.
The difficulties inherent in the telling hasn’t stopped O’Brien from trying. Without trying to deduct any preconceived meaning out of the events he simply tells the stories of the common soldier on the ground. Often the crazy stuff is true and the normal stuff isn’t, because the normal stuff is necessary to make you believe the truly incredible craziness. 5. I have to admit it was the fictional account that took my breath away. Nevertheless, it is compelling, simultaneously tragic and beautiful. ‘Why not?’ he said…He got into his car and rolled down the window. Here’s an excerpt from his memoir: Three silhouettes were tiptoeing out of the hamlet. He carried a strobe light and the responsibility for the lives of his men… Graduation in 1968 found him with a BA in political science and a draft notice. Let us know what’s wrong with this preview of, Published The problem with telling a war story is that it’s hard to get people to believe or understand the extremity of it—the reality of the horror and destruction and hurt. This author takes you into his mind, body, and spirit in a way few writers can. Describing the horrors of war, in a war that he never wanted to participate in.
6. The Question and Answer section for If I Die in a Combat Zone is a great I wondered what the other two men, the lucky two, had done after our volley.
I would have finished this book a week ago, but I've been down with the flu. But apparently that wasn’t good enough for O’Brien because he rewrote the story, fictionalizing it, but claiming responsibility and then scrutinizing what he had done. Then he said, “Man, I’m sorry.”
We’d love your help. Real or fictional characters? On the adequately dubbed Mad Mark’s chest, you’d find the necklace of dead Vietcong ears, literally. I really love "The Things They Carried", so I was so excited to start this one! He feels the guilt and the burden of having killed and he wants his readers to feel it, too.
An editor It is awful! Tim O'Brien matriculated at Macalester College. Remember the earlier excerpt from O’Brien’s memoir where O’Brien and Captain Johansen fired at three enemy silhouettes, killing one? I will NOT be reading any of his other works and DO NOT recommend that anyone read his stuff. Was rereading for a class. In the end, he concludes that we stepped in and took part in someone else's war...... something we had nothing to do with...... a problem that the Vietnamese... O'Brien was too scared to run away to Canada so he went to Vietnam. This conversation is very real, made even more believable when the author admits he can’t remember his exact words. These notes were contributed by members of the GradeSaver community. Does the fact that one is a memoir and one is fiction have anything to do with your reaction to them? (p. 124). Since I am finally viewing the Ken Burns Vietnam documentary I have dreaded seeing, I decided to listen to this memoir O'Brien began writing in Nam thru his journal and letters. Ransom Fellowship was founded by Denis and Margie Haack in 1981.
July 6, 2007 Describing the horrors of war, in a war that he never wanted to participate in. Refresh and try again. Not that I think he should feel otherwise, because I feel it, too. Tim O’Brien is the only author writing about the Vietnam War that I have read. There were no weapons. He lay face-up in the center of the trail, a slim, dead, almost dainty young man. Stop wasting the goddamn ammo. Using the audiobook version makes it good getting the emotional voice of a Vietnam solider/veteran. But for all of that, they are worth reading and discussing. I was really very disappointed :( It was very repetitive with hardly any "action", just long bouts of sitting or walking or talking about courage/morals/heros. Brilliant. I wondered if they’d stopped to help the dead man, if they had been angry at his death, or only frightened that they might die. Some good sketches of combat in Vietnam, but the author spends way too much time trying to convince you he's above it all -- the poetry references, the anti-war posturing, the easy sneers at boot camp and military discipline. Military terms, abbreviations, and names for weapons/trucks were used with no definition. Need another excuse to treat yourself to a new book this week? Anonymous "If I Die in a Combat Zone Themes". None of these objects are imaginary or concocted by the author, he identifies standard issue weapons down to the last ounce. “No doubt about it. If I Die in a Combat Zone is Tim O'Brien's attempt to understand his failures and why he participated in a war he was so adamantly against. In these works O'Brien clearly establishes fear as both a dominant aspect of the experience and an essential component necessary for the display of courage, one of his most significant considerations. Written by people who wish to remain anonymous. There is no greater purpose for any work of literature. In The Things They Carried, the fictionalized version, there is a chapter entitled, “The Man I Killed.” This time O’Brien looks. We've got you covered with the buzziest new releases of the day. He believes that patriotism doesn't entitle a person to kill. I completed the book in the throes of a relentless fever, that still persists as I write this, but that fever might have added the unknown ingredient a reader needs to embrace O'Brien's work: a sort of light-headed vulnerability. The dedication says: “This book is lovingly dedicated to the men of Alpha Company [which was the historical Tim O’Brien’s company], and in particular to Jimmy Cross, Norman Bowker, Rat Kiley, Mitchell Sanders, Henry Dobbins, and Kiowa.” Usually an author dedicates a book to real people, so based on precedent, when I encountered the dedicated names as characters within the pages of O’Brien’s book, I assumed they were real people. Through rigorous tests, he learns to exercise courage as a discipline and an extension of his mental reasoning. It’s kill or be killed.
This cathartic experience, of putting pen to paper, to try to explain and address his time as well as others in a war that even to this day we are trying to understand is a truly harrowing undertaking. Someone threw a grenade out at them.
As a first lieutenant and platoon leader, Jimmy Cross carried a compass, maps, code books, binoculars, and a .45-caliber pistol that weighted 2.9 pounds fully loaded. This is when we find out that the main character, or narrator, is a writer type, just like his namesake, Tim O’Brien. First is his memoir, If I Die in a Combat Zone, Box Me Up and Ship Me Home, which is an intense account that takes us from the time O’Brien received his draft notice at age 22, through basic training, one year as a grunt in Vietnam, and onto the plane where he changed into civilian clothes in the bathroom, ready to go home, a damaged young man. If you have the time, I highly recommend reading this book alongside the marvellous and gripping Ken Burns documentary about Vietnam in which the author plays a prominent role. For some reason, O’Brien returned to this same story again in his novel-like collection of short stories, The Things They Carried. 97-98). I was really very disappointed :( It was very repetitive with hardly any "action", just long bouts of sitting or walking or talking about courage/morals/heros. Like me, O'Brien read deeply into the war and took a principled stance against it, but unlike me he actually went, citing cowardice as his main reason for finally agreeing to go. No one will ever know whose bullet actually killed that man, but somehow that doesn’t bother me. I feel privileged for having been able to read this and receive a small glimpse of what so many others have experienced. I wondered if the dead man were a relative of the others and, if so, what it must have been to leave him lying in the rice.
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