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What is a major theme in the novel Wounded by Eric Waters?

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The theme of Wounded by Eric Walters is that everyone is affected by war.

The book begins with a quote from Jose Narosky: “In war, there are no unwounded soldiers.”  This is a perfect statement of the theme in this book.  Even though Marcus’s father returns from the war alive, he is still psychologically wounded. The book makes the argument that post-traumatic stress disorder is just as serious and debilitating as a physical wound, and sometimes more so because everyone treats you like you are fine when you are not.

The book describes the effect of the war on the family.  As a teenager, Marcus has a lot of the responsibilities of his father.  His father is not there, so he picks up the slack.  He also worries constantly about whether or not his father is coming back.

Another common thread is that war affects everyone, but not equally.  Soldiers’ families are deeply affected.

I guess most people knew there was a war going on, but it was different when it was your father or mother over there fighting, defending our country, risking their lives.  How could anybody else know what that felt like? (ch 1)

This makes the families of soldiers feel more depressed and alone, because no one really understands them.


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