Similarities of “How to Tell a True War Story” by Ernest Hemingway and “A Soldier’s Home” by Tim O’Brien

Essay by amn14College, UndergraduateA+, June 2014

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Ashlynne Nichols

Professor Gull

ENC1102 Online

September 27th, 2012

Similarities of "How to Tell a True War Story" by Ernest Hemingway and

"A Soldier's Home" by Tim O'Brien

Ernest Hemingway's "A Soldier's Home" and Tim O'Brien's "How to Tell A True War Story" are two very different, yet also very similar, compelling stories about impact of war during the 20th century. The authors of both of these stories did a very well job at illustrating what war can do mentally to a person and what leads up to how that impact occurs. In Hemingway's "A Soldier's Home", the narrator describes a man named Harold Krebs that fought in World War I in Germany. In O'Brien's "How to Tell A True War Story", the narrator is explaining the war life of a man named Bob Riley who fought in Vietnam during the Vietnam War.

Despite the similarities in these stories, there are differences in themes and writing techniques of the authors.

The story that Hemingway created in "A Soldier's Home" had an underlying sad tone. Based off of the reading the main protagonist, Krebs, had a very emotionally difficult and stressful time during World War I in Germany. During his experience in war, Krebs had "been at Belleau Wood, Soissons, the Champagne, St. Mihiel and in the Argonne." (Hemingway, 4) which were sites where major battles took place in WWI. During and after those battles, the state of mind the Krebs could have been altered into was horrific. Seeing so much death, negativity and danger is not good for one's mental stability and had a negative effect on Krebs ability to handle complexity and compassion. In the story, it describes how Krebs arrives home later than everyone else. "People seemed to...