In The Things They Carried does Tim betray Jimmy because telling the truth in writing is more important than his loyalty to his fellow soldier?Look at the tension in the last sentences of Chapter...

In The Things They Carried does Tim betray Jimmy because telling the truth in writing is more important than his loyalty to his fellow soldier?

Look at the tension in the last sentences of Chapter 2.

 

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

At the end of the second chapter in The Things They Carried, Tim tells Jimmy that he would like to write a book about their experiences in the war.  Jimmy asks Tim to make him out to be a good guy, the best leader ever, and to not mention anything about Ted's death.  Tim promises to do as Jimmy says, but of course, the novel shows that Tim has not kept this promise.  Later in the novel, Tim grapples with the idea of truth and questions whether or not it is possible to tell a true war story.  Based on these conflicting ideas of what constitutes truth, one questions whether or not the events in the story are being relayed just as they have happened or if they have altered for some reason (intentionally or not).  So Tim might not necessarily be betraying Jimmy by telling his story as we are not sure that all the details are actual truths.  Also, Tim reveals that he does not believe that truth in writing is even possible let alone important.  Surprisingly, Tim as the narrator remains credible and sympathetic because he makes the reader understand the complexity of war and the effects that it has on soldiers.

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The Things They Carried

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