Symbolism in «The Things They Carried» Essay

A. Park

The Things They Carried

The symbols in Tim O'Brien's " The items They Carried” are essential to understanding the soldiers and their lives during the Vietnam War. In the opening with the story, Lieutenant Jimmy Get across would get into his foxhole and read the albhabets while picturing romance with Martha; nevertheless , at the end from the story following your death of Ted Lavender, he " crouched in the bottom of his foxhole and burned Martha's letters” (402). The inner thoughts of Get across would be wrongly ignored without the help of icons throughout his travel through Vietnam. O'Brien uses the psychological and physical weight carried by the troops as a representation of their personalities and how they will prefer to handle the warfare. The necessary and luxurious items transported by every solider provides a glimpse of individuality and personalization showing how they psychologically deal during the Vietnam War. The psychological weight carried by Cross symbolized the trauma he could be feeling during the war. O'Brien's use of symbols, such as the physical superstitious items and emotional burdens carried by the soldiers, exemplify the individual and honest issues each soldier can be coping with for war. The important symbol in the story was Martha's letters to Lieutenant Cross, showing the feeling burden and lack of ability as the leader this individual wished to become. The characters stored and carried in his rucksack that he examine every evening helped to provide him comfort by simply directing his mind to a different place throughout the Vietnam Warfare. They served the purpose of his distraction and dreams whilst fighting the war while using strength they will provided him. The narrator states that " These were not like letters, nevertheless Lieutenant Get across was wishing, so this individual kept them folded in plastic at the end of his rucksack” (392). This hope began to prevent his perspective and duty as an officer in Vietnam. Not simply was he carrying the ounces of paper in the back, but the emotional excess weight of the sacrifice he made in order to serve his country,...



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