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The Things They Carried (1990)

de Tim O'Brien

Altres autors: Mira la secció altres autors.

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
13,084369394 (4.18)681
This depicts the men of Alpha Company. They battle the enemy (or maybe more the idea of the enemy), and occasionally each other. In their relationships we see their isolation and loneliness, their rage and fear. They miss their families, their girlfriends and buddies; they miss the lives they left back home. Yet they find sympathy and kindness for strangers (the old man who leads them unscathed through the mine field, the girl who grieves while she dances), and love for each other, because in Vietnam they are the only family they have.… (més)
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    jrgoetziii: Because The Iliad is a classic war story and The Things They Carried is not, but took a number of passages almost directly from The Iliad (one of these is the catalog in the first book, but there are many others, too). The Iliad covers significantly more range and depth, and its themes are timeless.… (més)
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» Mira també 681 mencions

Anglès (364)  Castellà (2)  Francès (1)  Totes les llengües (367)
Es mostren 1-5 de 367 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Very interesting book! I now have a new perspective on the Vietnam War. I don't usually gravitate towards historical fiction, but It was very interesting to read about. ( )
  EvelynNygren | Nov 17, 2022 |
The Things They Carried is a series of anecdotes by Tim O’Brien about his experiences in Vietnam, written many years after his return to the USA. The writing is elegant and engaging. The stories are written from a close point of view giving a real sense of being with the characters: of sharing their experiences in a vivid and thought provoking way. A theme of the book that I found particularly interesting was that of truth. The fog of war makes the truth difficult to see. There are no absolutes other than death or injury. The perception that each soldier has is determined by his involvement in the situation and the trauma involved.

A sobering and brilliant book. ( )
  Azmir_Fakir | Oct 31, 2022 |
This book could have been entitled The Stories They Told. It is a series of interconnected essays based on the author’s experience before, during and after Vietnam, though he freely admits to fictionalizing the narrative to give the reader a more visceral feeling of what it was like. I particularly appreciated how the author linked the physical “things they carried” to their emotional burdens. These accounts show how the soldiers tried to retain their humanity in the face of war, and how war inevitably changed them. They could be killed at any time with no warning, and they tried to cope as best they could. What they lived through carried over into life after the war. I would venture to say this book is as much about the importance of story-telling as it is about the Vietnam War. It is a way to remember those lost, distance oneself from horrific reality, and attempt to deal with almost unbearable pain. Themes include mortality, guilt, shame, obligation, fear, and the transience of memory.

I went into it thinking it was non-fiction, but somewhere in the middle of the book, the author acknowledges that the stories are invented or embellished. I found the author pointing out the mechanics of his craft took me out of the immersive feel of the book. However, once I got past the idea that it wasn’t exactly what happened, I realized that the book was what the author wanted to convey to those of us who have never been to war. I could see the rain, the mud, and the dense forest. I could sense the fear. This book is not subtle. It contains wartime gruesomeness, death in many horrific forms, animal cruelty, and morbid humor. Recommended to anyone interested in the Vietnam experience.

Memorable quote:
“There were times in my life when I couldn’t feel much, not sadness or pity or passion, and somehow I blamed this place for what I had become, and I blamed it for taking away the person I had once been." ( )
  Castlelass | Oct 30, 2022 |
I had a friend who went to war. Part of him did not come home. His shoulder and much of his upper body was metal plate, but that is not the part I am talking about. The part that was left there was a piece of his soul, an innocence and lightness that could never be recaptured. He talked about the war when he was in his cups, which he was too often. His best buddy in the war was killed in front of his eyes, and Sam was convinced (be it true or not) that the bullet he took was meant for Sam. He felt his friend had saved his life and that he was not worthy of that sacrifice. Knowing him made reading this book a harder experience for me, it made the stories more real, it reminded me how many Sams there were out there in the jungles of Vietnam.

This is, of course, a book about war, and as such, not surprisingly, a book about loss. It is also a book about death, even the deaths of those who live, for people die in stages sometimes, they die in bits and pieces that they bury and exhume and rebury.

I cannot imagine anyone reads this book without taking it personally. Certainly the men who fought this war must find something I can never touch inside its pages. What I found myself seeing were Sam’s eyes, the way they sparkled when he was free of war for a moment and the way they clouded and glazed when he tried to tell anyone about what he was feeling. I would sometimes catch him in a quiet moment at his desk, and I knew without a word that he was there. From the first page, I was walking with Sam, not with Tim, but then I realized Sam and Tim and Kiowa and Curt Lemon, are all the same person for one short moment in time.

I know why I have had this on my TBR for so long and procrastinated about opening it to read. No one really wants to go back to that war for even a second. I understand as little now about why were there as I did then, and history usually gives a person more perspective, not less. I think about all the potential we lost, not only in the person of those who died, but in those who came back so changed and could find no way to move forward. Tim O’Brien is one of the lucky ones. He found a voice through his writing and purged some of his ghosts in that way. Some men just carried them to the grave, unpurged...and that must be the worst weight they were asked to carry. ( )
  mattorsara | Aug 11, 2022 |
The book is a collection of short stories of American soldiers in the Vietnam War. It has faced several challenges for vulgar language, sexual content and violence. The George County School District in Mississippi banned it in 2007 for profanity.
  LMariaHG | Jul 17, 2022 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 367 (següent | mostra-les totes)
"As the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan drag on, O’Brien’s powerful depictions are as real today as ever."
 

» Afegeix-hi altres autors (2 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Tim O'Brienautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Cranston, BryanNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Prate, Jean-YvesTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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This book is essentially different from any other that has been published concerning the 'late war' or any of its incidents. Those who have had any such experience as the author will see its truthfulness at once, and to all other readers it is commended as a statement of actual things by one who experienced them to the fullest.
-- John Ransom's Andersonville Diary
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This book is lovingly dedicated to the men of Alpha Company, and in particular to Jimmy Cross, Norman Bowker, Rat Kiley, Mitchell Sanders, Henry Dobbins, and Kiowa.
Primeres paraules
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First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross carried letters from a girl named Martha, a junior at Mount Sebastian College in New Jersey. They werre not love letters, but Lieutenant Cross was hoping, so he kept them folded in plastic at the bottom of his rucksack.
Citacions
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It was my view then, and still is, that you don't make war without knowing why.

I was a coward. I went to the war.
Garden of Evil. Over here, man, every sin's real fresh and original.
"Well, right now," she said, "I'm not dead. But when I am, it's like . . . I don't know, I guess it's like being inside a book that nobody's reading."
I want you to know why story-truth is truer sometimes than happening-truth. Here is the happening-truth. I was once a soldier. There were many bodies, real bodies with real faces, but I was young then and I was afraid to look. And now, twenty years later, I'm left with faceless responsibility and faceless grief.

Here is the story-truth. He was a slim, dead, almost dainty young man of about twenty. He lay in the center of a red clay trail near the village of My Khe. His jaw was in his throat. His one eye was shut, the other eye was a star-shaped hole. I killed him.

What stories can do, I guess, is make things present.
Darreres paraules
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(Clica-hi per mostrar-ho. Compte: pot anticipar-te quin és el desenllaç de l'obra.)
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This is a collection of short stories, one of which is titled The Things They Carried. Do not combine this collection with that individual story.
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This depicts the men of Alpha Company. They battle the enemy (or maybe more the idea of the enemy), and occasionally each other. In their relationships we see their isolation and loneliness, their rage and fear. They miss their families, their girlfriends and buddies; they miss the lives they left back home. Yet they find sympathy and kindness for strangers (the old man who leads them unscathed through the mine field, the girl who grieves while she dances), and love for each other, because in Vietnam they are the only family they have.

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