If I Die in a Combat Zone, Box Me Up and Ship Me Home - Chapter 5, Under the Mountain Summary & Analysis

Tim O'Brien
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The narrative reverses again in this chapter as O'Brien recounts the experience of basic training at Ft. Lewis, in Washington. Sixty miles from the white-topped dome of Mount Rainier, one hundred young men accompany O'Brien in submission to shaven heads, uniforms, and drill sergeants. Basic training is difficult for O'Brien. He perceives himself as a misplaced intellectual in the midst of savages. O'Brien goes through the motions of training, but turns inward. He looks with disdain on those that flourish in the caustic atmosphere of basic training. He rebels against the notion that ferocity in battle is what makes a man out of a boy. O'Brien is lonely and thinks of deserting.

He finds a friend in a fellow soldier, Erik, who shares his point of view on the Vietnam War and reads T. E Lawrence as intensely as...

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This section contains 581 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the If I Die in a Combat Zone, Box Me Up and Ship Me Home Study Guide
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