Hi! Thanks for dropping by!
You can use the pages linked here to learn more about The Things They Carried, about Tim O'Brien's other writings, and about the Vietnam War generally. This page is not exhaustive -- it's somewhere to begin.
Tim O'Brien Home Page
This is the basic Internet resource. All but one or two of the other links here related to Tim O'Brien are also linked on this page. I just include a few of special interest. Browse this page thoroughly!
"The Vietnam In Me" -- O'Brien's own essay from The New York Times Magazine in 1994, including his very pointed discussion of the My Lai Massacre (In the Lake of the Woods, O'Brien's 1994 novel, concerns a fictional veteran who was also a participant in this massacre).
Interview -- The Heart Under Stress: Interview with author Tim O'Brien.
"After a notorious 1994 New York Times Magazine essay that was tantamount to a suicide note and a breakdown during a reading in Ann Arbor, Michigan, writer Tim O'Brien began, slowly, to confront his demons." A short but important interview, just published.
"PLAUSIBILITY OF DENIAL: Tim O'Brien, My Lai, and America", by H. Bruce Franklin of Rutgers University/Newark Campus. An essay about In the Lake of the Woods, but also about O'Brien's portrayal of the Vietnam War and its impact on America.
Materials on The Things They Carried
See the "review" section on the Tim O'Brien Home page (see above). The only review no longer available there that I can find elsewhere is:
Materials on The Vietnam War
Here are a very few sites that will help you get started in learning about the history of the Vietnam War -- a history which is quite absent from O'Brien's works, as he is mostly concerned with issues of memory and writing.
Grover Furr's Vietnam War Page. This is my page of links to materials on the Vietnam War. See also
More Chomsky on atrocities in Cambodia. A few remarks by a major scholar of the Vietnam War about the extent to which American atrocities are overlooked in the US.
"Vietnamese war museum lacks 'historical balance'" Joe Surkiewicz, former newspaper reporter and now free-lancer, keeps this site called "Sun Lies", on which he keeps tabs on the pro-corporate, nationalistic bias of The Baltimore Sun (generally considered one of the half-dozen or so "best" newspapers in the United States). This is the link to the March 10, 1999 issue, in which a Sun writer complains about the "pro-Vietnamese" bias of a Vietnam War museum in -- Vietnam! [NOTE: This is no longer available as of November 2004. I'm going to try to get it again from the author. - GF]
The Vietnam War was a horrible event. It's impossible to study it without being emotionally affected, even "wounded" in some way. It is usually not a comfortable experience. But it is a very important one.
I hope you enjoy these materials!
Sincerely, Grover Furr
http://chss.montclair.edu/english/furr/Vietnam/timobrientalk.html | email@example.com | updated 11 Nov 04