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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Ted Lavender's name is very symbolic because lavender is a plant/flower which is often associated with tranquility, peace, and calmness. It is ironic, because we know that he had a tendency to self-medicate by using tranquilizers like it was nobody's business while his platoon was out there fighting.

It is also ironic because lavender is also associated with anything but a rough, rogue soldier. It is the name of a small flower, and since Ted was very sensitive and very scared of the war, we could associate his innocence and delicate state to that of a flower.

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The Things They Carried

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