"How to Tell a True War Story": Analysis on the Beauty of Writing

Topics: Storytelling, Narrative, Tell Pages: 1 (344 words) Published: May 27, 2011
“How to tell a true war story”-Character Analysis

Tim O’ Brien’s “How to tell a true war story” construes the relationship between the war experiences and the ways of storytelling. O Brien’s story telling as a narrator shows that the storyteller has the power to form his listener’s experiences and opinions. His way of describing situations are unique because his story distorted the reader’s perceptions of beauty and ugliness by making different situation and scenes seem pleasing, even though it contains improbability

Tim O’ Brien describes Lemon Curt’s death as beautiful, “the way the sunlight came around him and lifted him up and sucked him high into a tree full of moss and vines and white blossoms”, depicting the nature around him. O’Brien’s view of nature is extraordinarily imaginative because of the way he describes the nature very beautifully, showing that he’s very friendly and close to nature, understanding every details around the environment that’s happening. Moreover, as a soldier, O’Brien is exposed to the nature, which might be a cause to describe the surroundings around him in an extravagant manner

In a true war story, O’Brien says, “It’s difficult to separate what happened from what seemed to happen.” This statement by O’Brien shows that certain things can’t be expressed through words, but can only be viewable through imagination or by witnessing the situation. He describes a story that Mitchell Sanders tells, recounting a trip of the troops to the mountains where they hear strange noises and echoes, and talking monkeys and trees. O’Brien often marks out that the story is “true”, but the way he illustrates the surroundings to the readers makes it seem unrealistic. Thus, the true war story seems irrelevant.

O’Brien’s improbable statements regarding the war experiences and storytelling, creates imaginative perceptions of beauty and ugliness of the world among his readers, making them attentive to his messages. Consequently, he shows that...
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