Help with Questions to The Things They Carried: Speaking of Courage (pages 137-155)
Speaking of Courage (pages 137-155)
1. What is the setting of this chapter?
2. Explain why Norman Bowker continuously drives the same seven mile loop around the lake.
3. While driving, Norman Bowker thinks first about how he has no place to go. Also, he thinks about his friends before the war who now live elsewhere, have jobs, go to school,the girls have mostly married. Norman’s ex-girlfriend is now married and lives in a “pleasant blue house.” What is the narrator trying to show the reader by including this piece of information into the novel?
4. What was the only thing that Norman felt proud enough to brag to Sally Kramer about after the war?
5. Before going to war, Norman wanted nothing more than to please his father. He felt his father was only interested in Norman winning medals. Norman returned from the war with 7 medals. Why did Norman only talk about what he would have said to his father? He does not ever tell his father about the medals he won in Vietnam.
6. Again, the death of an Alpha company member brings about guilty feelings. Who has guilt feelings over Kiowa’s passing and why?
7. Bowker makes it clear that he has a need to talk about what happened to him and the atrocities that he saw in the war. However, he never did. Why didn’t Norman Bowker talk about anything that happened in Vietnam?