Question #6

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Question #6

Post  Scott Davis on Wed May 04, 2011 8:47 pm

Profanity is a type of language that is both vile and often reveals explicit behavior. Tim O'Brien inserts profanity into his book in order to both accurately depict the life of the soldiers and to help provide a sense of how aweful war is.
In order to depict the life of the soldiers accurately it was necessary to show the use of profanity. It is well-known that profanity is common among soldiers at war and in order for O'Brien to portray a realistic image of the war he would have to display that. If profanity was not represented throughout the book, O'Brien would be cutting out a vital and common trait of soldiers at war.
Another reason for the use of profanity is that it symbolically represents war. War itself is vile, disgusting, and filled with anger or other types of emotion. The use of profanity by the soldiers displays a disturbing image and shows how strongly each soldier feels about the war. Profanity is said with an intended meaning, that one feels strongly for that particular situation whether that feeling be resentment or fear. War is a time where the soldiers feel the most afraid and filled with hatred; therefore, profanity is a proper way to display this feeling. Profanity, along with war, is consumed with raw emotion.

Scott Davis

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Response to Scott

Post  Jaclyn Izzo on Wed May 04, 2011 10:06 pm

Scott, the use of profanity makes this book very realistic, therefore I agree with your remarks on it. Without the use of profanity the readers cannot fully visualize what war is like, the profanity makes the novel true and real. I would think most people would agree that soliders are adult men who are not worried about their chioce of words to describe things...Overall, the profanity is a vital part of the novel to really give a well rounded visual of the life in the army.

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Response to Scott

Post  Shannon Christensen on Wed May 04, 2011 10:50 pm

I agree with your explanation of how profanity is an aspect of war and how it is a vital component in order to make O'briens novel realistic. However, I also believe it had a deeper meaning in the story, as that it served as a comfort to the soldiers; the soldiers used profanity to discuss horrible situations, situations which would have been uncomfortable to have a serious discussion about. The soldiers discussed Ted Lavender's death with terms that seperated themselves from the situation, as if they were dicussing a death on television or a death of someone insignificant. Profanity was the way the soldiers removed themselves from the emotional tumoil of the war and it was a way to relieve the tension in the unit.

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