The Sorrow of War: A Novel of North Vietnam Themes

Bao Ninh
This Study Guide consists of approximately 31 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Sorrow of War.
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Survivor Guilt

"Survivor guilt" is the term for an experience common to those who have endured a traumatic event in which large numbers of other people died. Such deaths can occur either accidentally such as a natural disaster like an earthquake or tsunami or in an "industrial" disaster like a plane crash or by design such as the Nazi Holocaust or a school massacre like Columbine in the United States. In many cases, those who remained alive are often haunted and troubled by the fact that they did so while so many others did not. Such people often feel guilty and unworthy, with their feelings often leading to depression, addiction, suicidal tendencies and other forms of "acting out." All of these activities release a buildup of emotional energy and tension. There is the strong sense throughout the novel that Kien experiences a form of such guilt with feelings that...

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This section contains 792 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Sorrow of War: A Novel of North Vietnam Study Guide
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