Analysis of Theme in "Soldier's Home"

Topics: Want, World War II, Question Pages: 2 (579 words) Published: March 6, 2002
As a young man coming back from the war, Krebs expected things to be the same when he got home and they were, except one. Sure the town looked older and all the girls had matured into beautiful woman, Krebs hade never expected that he would be the one to change. The horrific experiences of the first World War had alienated and removed those he had cared about, including his family, who stood naïve to the realities and consequences only those who live it first hand would comprehend.

The mere mention of the title leads to a main point of the story. Krebs had just returned after 2 years serving in one of the most deadly wars America has seen. The title "Soldier's Home" suggests more of a question; where is this soldier's home? In the story Krebs mentions a lot of being over in Germany and France, even commenting that he had "liked Germany better" and "did not want to leave…come home." Though he finally decided to come home, he constantly feels out of place and alone. War has long been known to sometimes be a very traumatizing event individuals involved. Common, god-loving people such as Krebs were summoned to fight a war that commanded them to kill thousands in the name of their country then return home with the idea that nothing would have changed. Krebs's misplacement is also seen in the fact that he can't talk about the war to anyone even though he desperately wants to and feels that he needs to in order for others to understand the impact that it had on him. He came home much after the "welcome back" celebration and all the stories had been told. Even his mother, despite her wanting him to talk about the war by asking questions, never really pays attention. As a result he resorts to lying about his experience, forcing Krebs to isolate himself and oppose discussing what he had needed to discuss and get off his chest.

The war experience forces Krebs to question all the assumptions and beliefs that had previously guided his life. Having killed men...
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