Question/Thought 7

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Question/Thought 7

Post  Jaclyn Izzo on Mon May 09, 2011 11:09 pm

In the section, "Sweetheart of the Song Tra Bong" Mary Anne is a character portrayed as many things. She is Mark Fossies wife, and loving figure since 6th grade, but also her character is made out to be more. The differnce of fighting over seas or resting at home? or the differnce of men and women? What do you guys think...

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Re: Question/Thought 7

Post  Scott Davis on Mon May 09, 2011 11:28 pm

Personally, I did not see Mary Anne Bell as either of those two contrasts. I saw Mary Anne Bell as the epitome of someone who has been consumed by the Vietnamese culture. Mary Anne Bell becomes intertwined with the barbaric and wild nature of the jungle as soon as she arrives, fascinated by her surroundings. Mark Fossie proves to be the polar opposite, someone who cannot comprehend the native culture and resists it entirely.
Although, I can definitely see a contrast between men and women throughout the chapter. Mary Anne Bell, perhaps seen as the representative for women, is someone who is able to comprehend the other, more uncivilized culture. Mary Anne Bell is able to fully understand the nature of the Vietnames, whereas Mark Fossie, perhaps seen as the representative for men, is someone who cannot even fathom, let alone interpret, the other culture. Mary Anne Bell also defies the norm by joining the Green Berets. The men, especially Mark Fossie, forsaw Mary Anne Bell being a form of comfort for them, never realizing she may take on her own interpretation of the war.

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Re: Question/Thought 7

Post  AviHershkowitz on Tue May 10, 2011 12:19 am

As stated in question 5 Mary Anne can be viewed as many things such as a hero, traitor, or something that the audience may infer on their own. I personally believe that Mary Anne is a combination of both a hero and a traitor based on the different reactions that multiple groups of people can have. Mary Anne bluntly betrayed her country by fighting with the Green Beret and openly embracing the Vietnamise life style and culture. This supprizes many of the soldiers because they cannot see how is is possible to embrace such an inferior culture. On a smaller scale, even though Mary Anne is betraying her country she is even betraying her sweetheart Fossie, who cannot seem to understand the Vietnamese culture because he is wrapped up in the American mindset that our culture is the best and should therefore be spread across the globe, hence why we went to war in another country to stop the spread of the hated communism. From another angle this same act of rebellion can be viewed as heroic because, in a way, Mary Anne is inspring the American public to be more open to other cultures that are not as bad as they seem from a distant land. She is also being heroic because she is inspring women to take roles that they would not generally take because of the American view of a stay at home wife/mom, whos only goal was to please the man because she was incapable of providing for herself. This act of heroism shows women, and men, that women are capable of pursuing their own interests and therefore able to sustain themselves.

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Re: Question/Thought 7

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