In this project, I showed that war is violent and is only violent. To me personally, war doesn't solve any problems and it only makes them worse. Everyone wants peace, not war, but in order to get peace they are going through war. The art piece that I made is a mixed media collage. The pictures in the background show how brutal and cruel the war is, and the skeletons are the citizens who are tired of the same thing every time. I started by getting pictures of the Vietnam War and putting them as the background, that way you can see what’s happening to those people. I chose cardboard represent the protest signs because whenever there was a war going on, there would be signs saying, “Peace Not War.” My message I’m trying to show is that war is violent and it’s hard to look at it a different way. Ashley Tyler January 2016
The Truth of War: Interviews
Interviews above Part 1 on the left and Part 2 on the right.
For this project we interviewed a veteran and posted it on the Storycorps website for our audience to listen to. The most exciting moment for us was meeting the veteran, Brian McAleer, and getting to know him personally. I really liked that because it shows that he’s not only here for the interview, he’s also here to get to know us and what we’re learning about. Before the interview happened we had to come up with questions to ask and how we planned to behave during the interview. Coming up with questions was kind of difficult because you don’t want to ask a triggering question that will upset the veteran. Each of us came up with ten questions and then we filtered them by choosing questions we thought were good and left the other ones out. With the remaining questions we did critique with other groups to refine our questions. The next part we did was finding a quiet space to set up and planning how we are going to set it up. After getting that done the tech person practiced using the Storycorps app and just getting to know it. When we finished getting all that done, we talked about how we were going to be dressed. Our group decided to dress professionally, once everything was in place we waited when the time comes to interview the veteran.
Before the interview started I felt really nervous because we were running around looking for things we needed for the interview. The day of the interview our group thought it would be nice to give him a bottle of water, then it started. He told us some things about himself to start and I thought it was interesting. As we went through the interview Brian answered the questions with tons of details making his story emotional and deep. The interview was really interesting, especially his opinions he had about Vietnam. I’m glad we got to interview Mr. McAleer and got to know him a bit before and after the interview. He’s a really funny, calm person and I’m glad our group got to meet him
The Things They Carried
For the project we also read a book called “The Things They Carried” written by Tim O’Brien. It has these short stories about people who have been in the war and they tell their stories to other people. In one story there’s a guy named Norman Bowker; he’s at home telling his father some stories about what happened in the war. He tells the stories with so much detail that people think he is lying and making the story up. They think that because the way he tells his story is unbelievable. But using a quote from the book, “Because it happened. Because every word is absolutely dead-on true.” Before he said that he was saying how the guy he’s telling the story to, isn’t going to believe him at all. He was upset that he was right though because he wanted the guy to believe him. In this book the soldiers carry feelings, thoughts and memories, from the war. All they want is someone to believe them and show that they understand what they’ve been through but not everyone is going to understand how you felt when you were there when it actually happened. But what I’m getting from this book is the soldiers tell their stories to connect with people.
A true war story is true when there’s no moral part to it and by the questions the audience asks. Also you can tell it’s a true war story if, “It never seems to end.” and I agree with that because it’s full of detail and many things happened there. But it’s not just that it’s also how they took everything or how war changed them. A true war story is unbelievable, emotional and dark because in the book Sanders talks about how he lost his best friend and it was a difficult time. But going back a few chapters, Rat Kylie told a story of a water buffalo and I think he used an animal instead of the actual person because no one really cares if someone died in the war since they all know that there’s going to be a lot of people who won’t make it. Using an animal to replace that person makes it the story really interesting and emotional when he was talking about how it was torched.
When I was reading this book one thing that got me thinking was this line, “But in truth war is also beauty” about how war can be beautiful. Some people who have been in the war say war isn’t that bad and it’s fun. When they tell their stories they like to exaggerate to get a certain reaction out of the person they’re telling it to, I feel like that’s the fun part. The ‘isn’t bad’ part I feel like is when they were actually there to experience for an example; if they got a shot they would tell the story with detail of how it felt and make it sound really dark when really it wasn’t that bad. Even though they’ve all been through pretty tough times, there’s a sense of humor when they tell war stories to hide how they are actually feeling in the inside. He’s saying war is beautiful yet when you look at it a different way it’s ugly
Gulf of Tonkin Reflection
We studied about the event that happened, Gulf of Tonkin and wrote an essay about our argument. We were also given a packet that had these primary sources and in each source we read through it to get more details in what was happening.. This project was really interesting and fun to work on because we got to investigate on the incident. The primary sources had information about what happened before and after the Indochina war also known as the Vietnam war. Learning about the war and what happened in between the United States and Vietnamese, I really wished that we got along for once but I know that can't happen because we are all different. It's not just with this war specifically, it's about all the wars we've had. Other than that I really enjoyed this project because it got me thinking a lot deeper and coming up with an argument was also very interesting. This project help me understand the world better and what we've gone through.