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contemporary literature

Tim O'brien
The Things They Carried.
 
Biography:
         Born in 1946 Minesota, Obtained a B.A. In political Science from Mcalester College.  He was Drafted to vietnam in 1969 after which he studied Government at Harvard.
 
Author Techniques:
        The author uses Vietnam as a basis of his works.  He also includes some of his personal life experiences in his works.  By using repetition of events and phrases he reinforces familiarity with the tales.  After reading a work of his you feel you know the narrator very well.  Also he uses metafiction attemting to further confuse fiction with non-fiction.
 
Critic Reviews:
        Nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and for the National Book Critics Circle Award. 
1)  "Tim O'brien is the best American Writer of his generation. " - San Fransico Examiner
2)  "events are recalled and retold again and again giving us a deep sense of the fluidity of truth and the dance of memory." - The New Yorker
3)  "The line between fiction and fact...is permanently blurred." - Chicago Sun-Times
4)  "Simply marvelous." - Newsweek
5)  "O'brien succeeds as well as any writer in conveying the free-fall sensation of fear and the surrealism of combat." - Time
 
Discussion Questions:
1) Why do you think Tim O'brien wrote this book?
2) How do you feel about Linda, Tim's first date? What does she represent?
3) What was the first THING mentioned? Why?
4) What do you think about O'briens "how to tell a true war story"?
5) Why do the soldiers tell jokes about killing? Why did O'brien Include this?
6) What is the significance of the details about weight?
7) Do you think it was important for the scene where the men shoot the animal? or the puppy on the bomb?
8) Why did O'brien say that Lemon got sucked up into the tree instead of saying he got blown up into the tree?
 
 
MCC Contemporarty Literature Course Group 1 Presentation.