Challenge Statement 8

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Post  CorinneBarnes on Tue May 10, 2011 9:36 pm

"What ultimately happens to Norman Bowker is the result of the Vietnam War."

The Vietnam War did influence Bowker's behavior after he returned home, but it was an indirect influence. After the war ended, Bowker found himself unable to share his experience with anyone because he felt that nobody was interested in listening. He was also afraid of sounding like "one of those whiner-vets" (page 156) that forces his story onto anyone willing to talk to him. In addition, Bowker realized that his friends and neighbors had continued with their normal lives while he was fighting in the war. Most of his friends either moved into cities or started attending college, and Sally Kramer, his former girlfriend, was now married. The townspeople intensified his reluctance to share his story because others would start to believe that he is unable to move on from the war. Of course, if Norman Bowker did not fight in the Vietnam War, he would not have to deal with the problems of readjusting to society, which is why the war was an indirect cause of his suicide.


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