Perspectives: The Surreal & the Real

Author: Patricia L

Blog 4

The story of the Sandking was chilling and grew more and more horrific with the passing of the pages. Kress is a demonic character that enjoyed seeing life suffer and fight against each other. He seems to have a mental condition like a serial killer that enjoys the thrill from people being tortured and killed. Kress started small. He started with a few piranhas in a tank and a hawk. The story spoke about how much Kress would be delighted when he had starved the piranhas and they would end up eating each other. When he brought the Sandkings, he did the same thing to them. For his selfish satisfaction, he caused war upon the Sandkings.

One of the morals that this story shows is the gradual worsening and barring of a person’s conscience. Once somebody does something wrong, it seems that it gets easier and easier to do worse. Instead of trying to come to a halt when  a person realizes that they have made a mistake, when ones try to cover for their mistakes, things start to get out of control. This is exactly what happened to Kress when he tried to hide the killing of Cath.

Another side of the story seems to be a ruler or god against the ones being ruled. When the Sandkings had Jala as their “god” they lived a relatively peaceful life and only waged war against each other when it was necessary. She did not hold back good or the necessary food and climate control for the Sandkings. However, when their ruler changed to Kress, even the face and their idea they had painted of him grew to show the man that they were worshipping. The Sandkings, as ones being ruled and reliant on Kress for the basic necessities knew him as a cruel, violent and evil ruler. In a way we see how people change and how their lifestyles are affected by the ruler of their country. For example, with the situation occurring in Venezuela, the people are suffering and cannot get food because of the corruption present in the government.

Blog #2

“This Blessed House” is a story of a newly wed couple, who’s relationship starts to strain with the differences in their tolerance and intolerance. Sanjeev seems to represent a more traditional Indian man whereas Twinkle represents the modern Indian girl. She doesnt cook traditional Indian food, loves the statues and idols of Mary or Jesus that she finds in their new home and has a charming and outgoing personality. Although Sanjeev seems to be admiring parts of her personality, his reservedness along with his set  ways causes friction between their relationship. This story doesnt seem to be about just a strained marriage between 2 different people. It portrays on a bigger scale the differences people in society can have when they have 2 very differing opinions. For example, not only does a differ viewpoint of religion at times pull apart marriage mates, it has done that to close knitted countries and nations of people. The importance is having respect for the other person’s beliefs.


Patricia Lee

The things they carried

In the story “The Things They Carried”, American soldiers  in Vietnam carry more than just their necessities for war.  Tangibly they carry canteens, bombs, guns, pictures of their lovers, cigarettes but they also carry intangibles things which also carry an invisible weight.

For example, the author talks about how they carry a burden of their lives,  grief, terror, love and longing.  Tim O Brien weaves the pattern of the visible and invisible things they carry by mentioning what each soldier had in their personal belongings but also what significance these items had.

Lavendar had in his bag, dope and tranquilizers. This man obviously carried the fear of death. Yet Lavander was the one to die. This irony points to the uncertainty of events in war and it creates mixed feelings of love yet hate as it did for the 24 year old Lieutenant.

This story had a sobering effect. It was the real lives in the eyes of soldiers and men of war. The reality of war was that there were bouts of fear and even cowardice. Sometimes there was even humor because they had to just “keep going” as the narrator says.

Soldeirs Home carries a weight as well that was intangible. An episode of war carried both a physical and emotional loss. The common thread of these stories it seems was the consequence of war whether it was durin or after war.


Patricia Lee

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