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“Story Truth” and “Happening Truth” in "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien

Tim O’Brien is a very diverse writer, he compared the ‘story truth’ and the ‘happening truth’ to illustrate a story to show why most war stories are fictional and the horrors of the experiences caused by the Vietnam War. These ideas were very essential to the story because it brought the readers imagination and sense of reality to the story to determine what the author’s purpose was.

The author’s purpose could be all a lot of things but the most important purpose of this piece of writing is what he defines as the ‘truth.

’ O’Brien starts the story off as ‘this is the truth’, and by the end of the story he explains how everything is a blur and how everything is mixed up, so the truth is solely up to you to determine.

Tim O’Brien clarifies the behaviors that happens in war and how some of it may seem unreal because its not ideally what someone would expect.

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He explains that if you question the storyteller, you may find that some things may feel untrue. For example, in ‘How to tell a true war story’, O’Brien says ‘A true war story is never moral. It does not instruct, nor encourage virtue, nor suggest models of proper human behavior'(O’Brien 68). This quote implies that in a true war story there is no proper behavior. Everything is chaos and should inflict that in a war story.

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Which means there is no happy ending to a war story.

Tim O’Brien tries to prove that by contradicting himself. He always says there is no moral to a true war story but then the stories that he wrote all had a moral. Tim O’Brien confuses the truth of the story with what actually happened and that explains why he keeps showing signs of hypocritism towards his own statement.Other examples of Tim O’Brien using story truth are when he was telling a story about him and elvis These signs show that O’Brien uses ‘story truth’ when writing some of his stories to make them seem believable and enjoyable.

Therefore the ‘story truth’ is mostly fiction.’ Story truth’ provides imagery and O’Brien may add more to the story then what actually happened to make the reader visualize and feel what’s happening in the story.

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“Story Truth” and “Happening Truth” in "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien. (2020, May 10). Retrieved from http://studymoose.com/story-truth-and-happening-truth-in-the-things-they-carried-by-tim-obrien-essay

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