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Symbols as Used in the Things They Carried Essay


The use of significance in this story is really remarkable. Utilizing the products soldiers tend to take with them to combat zone Tim O’Brien is able to tell a lot about what really soldiers want, their characters and even what might be going on in their individual life. I find this a story fascinating to me because when I was released I brought things to keep me going. Personal little items I carried with me had a significance.

In this story, although the writer is talking about things that soldiers carried with them, he is passing a message with a various meaning.

He is not simply informing a fascinating story but also explains each of the primary characters by informing the readers what these characters bring. A few of the characters carried things demanded by need and while some carried feelings and love. All these things they carried symbolized something. In this story, the writer has the ability to display in detail, each of the soldiers’ ways of dealing with the stresses of war by what they pick to carry.

The author calls this “humps”.

Lt Jimmy Cross carrying love letters represents how desperate these soldiers are for love. Lt Jimmy is dealing with the destructions of war by pretending that a lady called Martha is in love with him despite the fact that he understands that she is not. He would clearly think, imagine and even got brought away by Martha. Clearly affection and love was Lt Jimmy’s way of getting away the scaries of everyday. Mitchell Sanders the RTO and Henry Dobbins get away the truth of war by thinking about sex.

Mitchell Sanders for instance brings prophylactics and tiger fatigues while Henry Dobbins has his girlfriend’s pantyhose “around his neck as a comforter. Rat Kiley on the other hand carries comics as an escape. The New Testimony Bible carried by Kiowa represents religious beliefs and the strong structure of what the soldiers think in. The use of tranquilizers by Ted Lavender signifies fear and how agonizing the death can be. Bring lice and illness and they still endure shows how these soldiers were strong and how the living conditions were horrible.

Making use of poncho in bring the dead body signifies the imagination of the soldiers and how devices can be customized to carry out more than one function. Typical Bowker bring a thumb symbolizes these soldiers’ minds, body and spirit have actually dissociated. Carrying a thumb which had actually been cut from a remains represents tingling and emotionless. Soldiers marching for the sake of marching and without any function and no winning or losing represents that they were just doing what they are bought to do by the government.

They left supplies wherever they go since they knew that the chopper will supply them with more equipment the following day. This signifies how economically the federal government is and how resources are being squandered in times of war. Lt Jimmy after blaming himself for the dead of Lavender he decided that he will start instilling discipline and avoid living the important things they carried or getting rid of the devices. This may represent a larger group of people back in the house who are opposing wasteful spending.

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