Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Media Haiku
Don’t support the war
Brainwashing people back home
Always get it wrong

Battle Haiku
Battle is deadly
Before one can blink an eye
Game of life is done

Drug Haiku
To relax the mind
Some claim it’s necessary
Abusing can kill

Homesick Haiku

My mother’s dinners
Girlfriend alone at the bar
No jobs left for me

Buddy Haiku
Without I would die
Maintain mental sanity
Like a good brother

I chose to write Haikus because I found it to be a fun and creative way to express an opinion on a particular issue. These poems demonstrate my understanding of the text “The Things They Carried” because I have extracted some of the key concepts and obstacles that soldiers had to face: the media played a large role in developing a negative image of the war, battle is of course a prominent part of any war, drugs were used and abused by soldiers during the war, after being gone for so long the soldiers became homesick, and every soldier had to have a buddy to pair up with for missions and to talk to. These poems fit the genre of Haikus because I used five syllables for the first line, then seven syllables for the second, and another five for the third line.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

<----This is Post modern art

This is modern art

The piece of art I chose for my modern art reflects modern art because it is abstract. It is abstract because of the way the person looks more like the ghost of an alien and how the blue colors of the sea blend into the red colors of the sky. “The Scream” causes the viewer to ask questions and provokes thought by having such a scared looking person standing on a dock just prior to sunset, or after sunrise, which are also characteristics of modernism.
Andy Warhol’s nine pictures of the woman is an example of postmodern art. This is postmodern art because of the contradiction of the colors in the pictures. Her face color changes every time, although her hair is nearly the same in three of the pictures. The group of photos lacks a clear central hierarchy or organizing principle. It is just the same photo colored nine different ways.
Overall, Tim O’Brien’s novel “The Things They Carried” is a postmodern book. It uses extreme complexity and contradiction. The contradiction is obvious on page 180 when his answer to his daughter’s question of “Have you ever killed anyone?” can be BOTH “of course not” and “yes.” YOU CANNOT ANSWER EITHER YES, HONESTLY, OR NO, HONESTLY, TO “HAVE YOU EVER KILLED ANYONE,” IT JUST DOESN’T WORK!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Post 3

Question: On page 32, O'Brien describes the Vietnam War by telling what it is not. Reverse his language and generate a list that describes the Vietnam War. Why might O'Brien choose to describe things in reverse?

The war is: un-orderly, doubtful, questioning, unknown enemies, unknown terrain, unknown boundaries, mountains, jungles, tunnels unknown status or position, unknown score, invisible enemy, no rules, no winner or loser, invisible tactics and strategies.

O’Brien reverses the language to put a heavier tone on reality. By stressing the positive contradiction of the war details, O’Brien creates a feel of deep sarcasm. His sarcasm is felt on page 32 when he says, “The playing field was laid out in a strict grid, no tunnels or mountains or jungles.” Originally this sentence was to be intended to be about checkers; however, O’Brien felt so much anger and hatred while writing it that he slowly faded into specifically what pissed him off about the war, proving that the reverse language was to put a more negative feeling on reality. Later in the paragraph O’Brien comes back to the sarcastic tone by saying, “You knew where you stood. You knew the score. The pieces were out on the board, the enemy was visible, you could watch the tactics unfolding into larger strategies. There was a winner and a loser. There were rules.” (page 35) O’Brien forces one to think about how each of those ideas sounds so nice and perfect while they are completely unrealistic. To show how reversing the tone sets a heavier tone, I will retype my interpretation of that quote for reality: “Nobody knew where they stood. The death count was unknown. Everyone was in hiding; it’s difficult to determine what is going on. Each battle ends in an indecisive victory. Anyone can do anything.” The second version is not nearly as depressing as the original one because the second quote tells you what is going on while the first quote makes you realize it for yourself. O’Brien uses a creative writing technique of describing things in reverse to make you think for yourself and to overall put a darker tone on a section.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Post 2 Due April 23rd

1. -The students should learn how the POW’s were treated on both sides.
-What was the conflict or reason for fighting a war?
-What was the United States’ view on the war?

2. -The man in the video thought that Vietnam should have agreed with the U.S. sooner
-I found it interesting how they never talk about their civil war
-The students are taught that the communists arose to take their country back
-A reason they are not taught about the war is because they believe they should forget about the past. This could become very problematic after the “war generation” grows old and loses power because the newcomers would not be afraid enough of war. This may lead to the decision to act forcefully to solve a problem without fully considering or understanding the consequences.
-It appears Vietnam is not really healing from the war; they just forget it and act like it never happened, hoping the pain will go away.

3. I am absolutely shocked right now. My breathing has stopped. I can no longer move my fingers to type. I am dizzier than after riding the Twizzler. I’m just freaking out at the littlest things like the bug on my wall that could be a microphone or a camera someone is watching me through, or the creaking noise my house makes when someone flushes the toilet could cause my house to collapse, or even this computer mouse could be reading and analyzing my emotions. It feels like I’m in an underground tunnel, counting down the time until I can get out of here. I can’t write anything more right now; I just need some time. I’ll finish this later.

(It has taken 31 sleepless hours for me to even attempt to finish this.)
What horrified me the other day were the internet articles I came across while searching the web in English. “The Vietnam War.” That’s it. Right there. Bam. Boom. Bang. Plain and Simple. Yet a Secret? And Why didn’t I learn about this in school? The horrors my parents were alive during? The treatment my grandparents received? Yeah, let’s just not tell the kids about this, shhh!?? Why did they, how could, for…? I give up, 31.5 hours later and I still can’t control myself, great. I’m sorry I can’t finish this now, but maybe I’ll come back to it in a few months. Maybe a whole bottle of sleeping pills will do the trick…

Sunday, April 19, 2009

First Entry, Due 4/20/2009

Link to Map of Vietnam and surrounding area from 1945-1963:

I chose a map of the Vietnam area for my artifact because I feel that it is a necessity to familiarize oneself with the area to help gain an understanding of the conflict as a whole.
After looking at the map, I find it interesting how Vietnam is such a long and skinny country. That must have changed the tactics of war because the actual length of the land border is so short. Also the South China Sea and the Gulf of Tonkin border almost the entire eastern coast of Vietnam. The small land borders and the easy access by sea may have contributed to a heavily naval oriented war.
I also found it interesting how the capitals Hanoi and Saigon were located in the far north and south parts of the country, respectively. This way maybe it gives them more distance between each other, and neither of them are located on the sea, isolating the cities even more.
Laos, Cambodia, and China are the neighboring countries of North and South Vietnam. China borders only the very north edge of North Vietnam while Cambodia borders the west side of South Vietnam, leaving Laos to border the west side of North Vietnam. Laos played a key role in the war as the Ho Chi Minh trail ran through it, connecting much of North Vietnam.
The geography of Southeast Asia was crucial in the war because it offered protection, transportation and diversity.