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true war story - of the most unbearable parts are true...

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Read "How to Tell a True War Story" in relation to Alcott's Hospital Sketches. What criteria does O'Brien establish for war stories? Do Alcott's sketches fulfill these criteria? Why/why not? Throughout, “A True War Story”, Tim O’Brien establishes a criterion for war stories. He insists that a true war story is not moral and tells us not to believe a story that seems moral. He says, “ As a first rule of thumb, therefore, you can tell a true war story by its absolute and uncompromising allegiance to obscenity and evil,” (69, O’Brien). His story is immoral and evil because when Rat Kiley writes to his dead friend’s sister, and she does not write back. This is true because it is unfair and wrong, as is war. O’Brien states that sometimes a true war story cannot be believed because some
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Unformatted text preview: of the most unbearable parts are true, while some of the normal parts are not, sometimes they are impossible to tell. Th mrora of a true war story, like the thread that makes the loth, cannot be separated from the story itself. It cannot be made general or abstract. In a true war story, nothing is absolutely true. When O’Brien describes the death of Curt Lemon, it is unspecific and detached. The essence fo a true war story lies in the reality of the situation. A true war story is not about courage and heroism but about the reality of misplaced heroism and anger. Also about the inability for soldiers to deal affectively with their feelings about a horribke expiernce. Alcotts story does not follow the criteria. Because it is true, and it is believable and specific and attached....
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