Soldiers need heroes too

Topics: Short story, F. Scott Fitzgerald, English-language films Pages: 4 (1158 words) Published: April 21, 2014
Soldiers need Heroes too
Though Ernest Hemingway’s “Soldier’s Home” (1925) and Tim O’Brien’s “How to Tell A True War Story” (1987) were written about sixty two years apart and portray different experiences after the war settling back into everyday American society, both works have similar situations, a setting of war, and experiences. In “Soldier’s Home”, Harold Krebs, a nineteen year old soldier, fought in the Belleau Wood, Soissons, the Champagne, St. Mihiel, and in the Argonne battles of World War I, while the soldier in “How to Tell a True War Story” is deployed during the Vietnam War. Both of the stories have protagonists who are both returning veterans. “Soldier’s Home” and “How to Tell a True War Story” have soldiers who have a tough time returning to society after their respective war and must lie to bring a closer picture of what truly happened during the battles which is what they have in common, however, they both deal with coming home after the war differently than each other. Both characters had similar war time experiences. Krebs went straight to war from a college in Kansas. The story is set in the era of World War I and his arrival home. Tim O’Brien like Ernest Hemingway starts the short story during a war. Tim O’Brien’s short story is set in the Vietnam War. There is nothing dignifying about the war, also there are no morals in war. To tell the harshness and severity of the war both Harold Krebs and Timothy O’Brien have to lie. The internal conflict requires exaggeration to describe ideas that cannot be put into words such as the grotesqueness and the beauty of the war, also to receive people’s attention. Hemingway states, “His town had heard too many atrocity stories to be thrilled by actualities… Krebs found that to be listened to at all he had to lie” (165). Upon Krebs’s late return to his town the stories and atrocities of the war had already been told and no one wanted to hear it anymore. Krebs wanted to talk about the situations he was...


Cited: Hemingway, Ernest. “Soldier’s Home.” The Compact Bedford Introduction to Literature:
Reading, Thinking, Writing. Meyer, Michael. Ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martins, 2012. Print.
O’Brien, Timothy. “How to Tell A True War Story.” The Compact Bedford Introduction to Literature:
Reading, Thinking, Writing. Meyer, Michael. Ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martins, 2012. Print.
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