Kiowa in “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien
- Date:May 22, 2023
- Category:The Things They Carried
- Topic:The Things They Carried Analysis
Kiowa is an important character in the novel “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien. He is a Native American soldier serving with the Alpha Company of the US Army in Vietnam. Kiowa is seen as a gentle, spiritual figure among the soldiers, and his presence brings them solace during difficult times. Kiowa is a well-respected leader who is loyal and brave. He has a deep connection to the land, which helps him to stay strong in the face of danger. He also carries special items with him that remind him of home, such as his bible and tobacco pouch. Kiowa’s good nature and wisdom provide comfort for the other soldiers during their time in Vietnam. He also faces his own challenges, such as the death of his best friend Ted Lavender. Through it all, Kiowa’s strength and resilience bring hope to his fellow soldiers. This makes Kiowa an important character in “The Things They Carried,” and a powerful symbol of the struggles faced by Native Americans during wartime.
Understanding the Kiowa of The Things They Carried
The Kiowa people are an important part of Tim O’Brien’s novel, The Things They Carried. The protagonist of the novel, Lieutenant Jimmy Cross, is a member of the Kiowa tribe and his experiences in Vietnam are heavily informed by his identity as a Native American. Throughout the book, O’Brien uses Cross’s identity to explore themes of displacement and alienation.
Cross carries many symbols that are connected to his Kiowa heritage, including a copy of the tribal book The Way to Rainy Mountain and an eagle feather. These items serve as reminders for Cross of his home and family, providing comfort during difficult times in Vietnam. He also faces pressure from the tribe to live up to the warrior traditions of his ancestors.
Kiowa culture is further explored through the character of Kiowa, a fellow solider and friend to Cross. His relationship with Kiowa serves to highlight Cross’s own identity as a Native American and serves as an exploration into tribal warfare and customs, such as scalping.
The story of The Things They Carried is a powerful exploration into the experiences of Native Americans in the Vietnam War. O’Brien’s use of Cross and Kiowa to illustrate their unique perspectives provides insight into a marginalized group that often goes unnoticed and unheard when it comes to the history of war. By combining historical accuracy with personal stories, O’Brien has crafted a beautiful and thoughtful narrative that gives voice to Native American soldiers who fought in Vietnam.
The Symbolic Meaning Behind Kiowa in The Things They Carried
In Tim O’Brien’s critically acclaimed novel, The Things They Carried, the character of Kiowa serves as a symbol for the horrors of war and its effects on those who serve. Kiowa is an African-American soldier from Oklahoma who was close friends with protagonist Tim O’Brien; the two men shared a deep bond throughout the war. Kiowa’s death serves as a turning point in the novel, and his passing symbolizes the devastating loss of life that can occur during wartime.
Kiowa is often seen as a figure of innocence and naivety, having grown up in Oklahoma with his parents and attended college prior to enlisting in the army. His death is described in great detail, with O’Brien describing the gruesome scene as “a scream locked inside him… a high-pitched keening sound that went on and on.” This serves to highlight the brutality of war and the senselessness of dying in such a manner.
Kiowa’s death is also emblematic of the sacrifices made by soldiers in war. His spirit lives on through his friends and those who knew him, serving as an example of courage and valor even in the face of death. Through Kiowa’s character, O’Brien conveys a powerful message about the effects of war on individuals—in particular, the physical and emotional weight soldiers carry with them.
The Impact of Kiowa on the Narrative of The Things They Carried
The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien is a powerful account of the Vietnam War and its impact on the soldiers who experienced it. In particular, Kiowa, one of the main characters in the novel, serves as an important example of how war can change people and their relationships with others.
Kiowa provides readers with a glimpse of the experiences of soldiers on the battlefield. Through his dialogue, readers learn about how war can take an emotional toll on soldiers and how they cope with their pain and trauma. He also serves as an example of resilience in the face of terrible adversity, showing that even in difficult times it is possible to remain hopeful.
Kiowa’s presence in the story also serves to show how friendship can be a source of strength and comfort for soldiers during times of hardship. His relationship with O’Brien is especially significant, as it demonstrates the power of human connection even in the midst of tragedy.
Ultimately, Kiowa’s impact on the narrative of The Things They Carried is immense. He provides readers with a window into the harrowing realities of war, while also serving as an example of strength and resilience in the face of adversity. His presence serves to remind us all of the importance of friendship and human connection in difficult times.