Tim O'Brien





Tim O'Brien

Author profile


born
in Minnesota
October 01, 1946

gender
male

website

genre


About this author

Tim O'Brien matriculated at Macalester College. Graduation in 1968 found him with a BA in political science and a draft notice.

O'Brien was against the war but reported for service and was sent to Vietnam with what has been called the "unlucky" Americal division due to its involvement in the My Lai massacre in 1968, an event which figures prominently in In the Lake of the Woods. He was assigned to 3rd Platoon, A Company, 5th Battalion, 46th Infantry, as an infantry foot soldier. O'Brien's tour of duty was 1969-70.

After Vietnam he became a graduate student at Harvard. No doubt he was one of very few Vietnam veterans there at that time, much less Combat Infantry Badge (CIB) holders. Having the opportunity to do an internship at the Washington...more


Average rating: 4.03 · 131,362 ratings · 9,102 reviews · 19 distinct works · Similar authors
The Things They Carried
4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 106,427 ratings — published 1990 — 55 editions
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In the Lake of the Woods
3.76 of 5 stars 3.76 avg rating — 9,357 ratings — published 1994 — 22 editions
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Going After Cacciato
3.89 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 6,896 ratings — published 1978 — 29 editions
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If I Die in a Combat Zone: ...
3.93 of 5 stars 3.93 avg rating — 4,229 ratings — published 1973 — 24 editions
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Tomcat In Love
3.37 of 5 stars 3.37 avg rating — 2,329 ratings — published 1998 — 17 editions
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July, July
3.42 of 5 stars 3.42 avg rating — 1,933 ratings — published 2002 — 12 editions
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The Nuclear Age
3.39 of 5 stars 3.39 avg rating — 704 ratings — published 1985 — 8 editions
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Northern Lights
3.28 of 5 stars 3.28 avg rating — 650 ratings — published 1975 — 7 editions
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The Things They Carried / I...
4.3 of 5 stars 4.30 avg rating — 181 ratings
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On the Rainy River
4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 26 ratings — published 1990
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“They carried the sky. The whole atmosphere, they carried it, the humidity, the monsoons, the stink of fungus and decay, all of it, they carried gravity.”
Tim O'Brien, The Things They Carried

“A thing may happen and be a total lie; another thing may not happen and be truer than the truth.”
Tim O'Brien, The Things They Carried

“A true war story is never moral. It does not instruct, nor encourage virtue, nor suggest models of proper human behavior, nor restrain men from doing the things men have always done. If a story seems moral, do not believe it. If at the end of a war story you feel uplifted, or if you feel that some small bit of rectitude has been salvaged from the larger waste, then you have been made the victim of a very old and terrible lie. There is no rectitude whatsoever. There is no virtue. As a first rule of thumb, therefore, you can tell a true war story by its absolute and uncompromising allegiance to obscenity and evil. ”
Tim O'Brien, The Things They Carried
tags: war

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