Tim O'Brien's-The Things They Carried Eating Them Away.
For young people, the Vietnam War is a thing of the past and they can.
only learn about it from second hand sources. In Tim O'brien's The.
Things They Carried, it becomes very apparent that the Vietnam.
conflict has proved to be one that many of the participants have not.
been able move away from, while getting on with their lives. Obrien.
shows that the conflict takes on a parasitic form that eats away on.
its victims for the rest of their lives.
A parasite is defined as an organism that grows, feeds, and is.
sheltered on or in a different organism while harming its host. The.
war in this case takes the place of the organism, and the host becomes.
the soldiers. There are several examples of the parasitic nature of.
war through out the book. In one particular section, Tim O'Brien.
returns to Vietnam with his daughter. Twenty years had gone by, but it.
seems as though all of his thoughts are geared back to the time he had.
spent in the jungle so long before. The two of them travel all over.
the country, but before their departure, he returns to the field where.
he feels he lost everything. On this list he includes his honor, his.
best friend, and all faith in himself. For O'Brien, evidence of the.
parasite is not solely in his return Vietnam, but rather a constant.
personal preoccupation that seems to flow through the collection of.
stories. O'Brien shows how the memories of the war take on a parasitic.
form, and uses himself as an example.
In the chapterSpeaking of Courage, O'Brien introduces a character.
by the name of Norman Bowker. In the story Norman finds him self home.
after serving his time in Vietnam. Even though he is back in his home.
town, things do not seem the same to him. The was seems to have put a.
new spin on his life. Most of the story he spends driving in circles.
while thinking about the war and his lack of place in his old society.
The war becomes his whole life, and he feels as though he is to far.