Robert Ross - Tragic Hero ("The Wars").

Essay by Gena_ January 2006

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Since man has walked on earth, he had always been in conflict with himself and other human beings. For thousands of years, there have been many furious battles fought among rival groups over different issues that seemed big at that time. The end results of each of the conflicts were always pretty much the same: the mass deaths and destruction of civilizations, and horrible physical and emotional impacts of the individuals left to live with the horrors they had faced.

After each war, different heroes were proclaimed, while ordinary soldiers who gave their lives away for their countries and were killed during the battles were forgotten. "The Wars" by Timothy Findley describes the place of ordinary men in a situation which magnify their actions until they seem either heroic or insane, or both. "The Wars" does not describe the deeds of the extraordinary men, instead, it deals with a man who is flawed, as we all are, and whose flaws widen as war goes on.

By traditional definition, hero is someone who is larger than life, someone who possesses great strength and courage. Was Robert Ross, the protagonist of "The Wars", a hero? First answer that comes to mind is "no", but the more one thinks about it, the more he starts to believe that Robert indeed was a hero, though not a traditional one. Although Robert Ross does not blindly follow orders of his commanders, Robert Ross is a hero because he is a courageous man who always helps those who are in need, a man who cares about his family, and a man who believes in life above everything.

In every battle, ordinary people show heroism and a lot of courage, which either go unnoticed or are forgotten after a short...