Essay on War Literature : By Phil Klay, And The Things They Carried

1700 Words Nov 24th, 2015 7 Pages
In the two novels of war literature Redeployment, by Phil Klay, and The Things They Carried, by Tim O’Brien, both call attention to the war’s destruction of its soldiers’ identities. With The Things They Carried, we are introduced to the story of a young Lieutenant Jimmy Cross who is currently fighting in the Vietnam War and holds a deep crush for his college-lover Martha. Jimmy carries many letters from Martha with him throughout the war, and he envisions this romantic illusion in which “more than anything, he want[s] Martha to love him as he love[s] her” (1). However, a conflict quickly transpires between his love for Martha and his responsibilities with the war, in which he is ultimately forced to make a decision between the two. Cross is forced to resolve this conflict by burning the “things” he carries that remind him of Martha in order to remain focused solely on the war. Similarly, in Redeployment, we are told the story of an American soldier named Sergeant Price and his journey returning home from the Iraq War. Many would assume that this would be a very peaceful and joyous reunion for Price and his family, however, several new struggles have ensued for him instead. This is due to him becoming so accustomed to spending his life in the war that he can no longer comprehend what purpose and identity he holds removed from it. Given the severe indoctrination he has been subjected to during the war, Price has now become just as unhesitant in making decisions at home as on…

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