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Analysis Essay on The Things They Carried


What effect do changes in narrative perspective have on the reader?

How do OBriens changes in point of view reinforce the themes of the
novel? How is our conception of truth contingent upon perspective and
other narrative techniques? Be sure to use direct quotes and indirect
evidence (reference to details ) from the novel to support.


What significance do the various tangible vs. abstract things soldiers carry hold within
the context of the novel as whole? Describe the multiple levels of ambiguity associated

with the term carry, and how such a multiplicity of meaning introduces the themes of the
novel. Make sure that you consider evidence from the entire novel and not just the first
chapter. Use specific direct and indirect evidence to support.

What does the concept of truth within fiction mean in the context of the

novel? Use evidence, providing close reading and analysis of a few key passages to

substantiate your thesis.

Read the critical acclaim for the novel at the

beginning of your book. Select one quote to defend,
refute or qualify. Make certain that your writing is an
analysis of the novel that uses the reviewers quote as
support to your own argument. Be sure to use direct
quotes and indirect evidence (reference to details) from
the novel to support your analysis.



Throughout the stories, OBrien juxtaposes images of great beauty with

images of great horror, the scene of Curt Lemons death in "How to Tell A
True War Story" being one notable example. Write an essay in which you
trace the use of such contrasting images across at least three of the stories.
What do these contrasting images say about OBriens experiences in

Analysis Essay on The Things They Carried

Essay Requirements:
A clear thesis statement and introduction which sets out
for your reader the point of your argument. Please do not
repeat verbatim the essay prompt.
A very brief synopsis of the stories you are discussing, if
necessary. This means writing a sentence or two about each
story (no more than one paragraph in total). This may not
apply to each of the topics.
An analysis supported by examples from the text, properly
quoted (or paraphrased) and cited.
Cite everything! When using a quote from the novel, it
should look like this: But the thing about remembering is
that you dont forget, (34). You are not required to use
sources other than OBriens book to support your views; if
you do use any outside sources, make sure you properly
quote or paraphrase and cite. Outside quotes would look
like this: Memory is a system with many moving parts, and
thus many processes that can go wrong, (Fernyhough). If
you use an outside source, you must create a works cited
page at the end of the essay.

Use MLA format for citing. You are not required to

use a separate sheet of paper for Works Cited.
Length: 3-4 pages
All drafts must be typed (Times New Roman, 12-pt. font),
double-spaced, 1" margins.
Must have an original title other than the book title.
Remember to save all drafts!!