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Meriel O.
Freshman at the University of Oregon
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French
TutorMe
Question:

Discuss a significant historical event in French culture using correct grammar, varied, accurate tenses, and extensive vocabulary.

Meriel O.
Answer:

Pendant le jour de Sainte Catherine sur le 25 novembre chaque année, les femmes qui ne sont pas mariés et qui ont 25 ans ou plus prient pour les maris. Ces femmes s’appellent les “Catherinettes” et les amis de ces femmes font les chapeaus orné et élaboré pour eux, typiquement dans les couleurs jaune et verte. Ces couleurs sont choisi parce que l’ironie qu’ils ne “se marient” pas. Le vert est un symbol du sage et la jaune représente l’espoir. Les Catherinettes portent ces chapeaus pour le jour entier et leurs amis les amènent au déjeuner. À cause de cette coutume de porter les chapeaus grandioses, les chapeliers a fait les parades pour les Catherinettes et leurs chapeaus. Les Catherinettes aussi font une promenade au statut de Sainte Catherine. Sainte Catherine est connu pour trouver les maris pour les Catherinettes donc elles ne “don St. Catherine’s bonnet,” ou ne deviennent pas les vieilles femmes. En approxativement 305 AD, Sainte Catherine a tenté de corriger empereur Maximus pour son vénérer des dieux faux et pour persécuter les Chrétiens. Il a organisé les débats entre elle et ses érudits, mais elle a converti beaucoup de ses érudits. Il a condamné tous à le mort, mais quand Catherine a touché la roue dans lequel elle mourrait, la roue a brisé, donc elle était décapité. On dit que les anges l’ont porté à Mt. Sinai. Il est habituel pour les femmes à marier à l’âge de 25 ou plus jeune. Avant une femme a l’âge de 25 ans, elle prie pour “un mari de bon lieu! Qu’il soit doux, opulent, libéral et agréable!” Si une femme a l’âge plus que 25 ans, elle prie pour un homme “qui soit supportable, ou qui, parmi le monde, au moins puisse passer!” Si une femme a près de 30 ans, a l’âge de 30 ans, ou a plus de 30 ans, elle est contente de n’importe qui. Il est aussi typique pendant ce jour de planter les arbres à cause de la phrase “A la Sainte Catherine, tout bois prend racine.” Tous Sainte Catherine et la reine Catherine d’Aragon les deux sont aussi associé avec les dentelliers, donc il est devenu un tradition de faire les gateaux catterns parce qu’ils sont léger et ils ressembler à la dentelle.

Writing
TutorMe
Question:

Annotate Tim O'Brien's "How to Tell a True War Story," calling attention to its basic literary features, paradoxes, tensions, major themes, distinctive word choices, and eccentricities. Using that information, generate a written “close reading” of preselected passages from the text.

Meriel O.
Answer:

O’Brien’s “How to Tell a True War Story” accomplishes the paradoxical way in which a war story reveals truth. Throughout the narrative, O’Brien recounts multiple stories from his time served overseas during the Vietnam war, using metafictional interjections to explain what a “true” war story consists of. He presents the tension that the events in true war stories do not necessarily have to be truthful—that there are different senses and rules of truth. In war stories, the most genuine truth is the raw emotions felt from the characters and sympathized by the reader. What holds most meaning in both war and war stories is the emotional experience. Such traumatic situations distort soldiers’ perceptions of reality and causes them to “lose [their] sense of the definite” (O’Brien 1158), and thus discredits the truth of what is really happening so that “nothing is ever absolutely true” (1158). O’Brien hones the reader’s attention to the fact that rather than the events coming first and the emotions following, he recalls stories from his emotions, and “what seems to happen becomes its own happening and has to be told that way” (1152). The need for telling what “seems to happen” is reasoned because what immediately feels true holds a more powerful, resonant, and strong meaning than what may have actually happened. One war-time occurrence that O’Brien recounts that may or may not have happened but is emotionally wholly and fervently true is that of Rat Kiley and the water buffalo. In this story, he illustrates his comrade, Rat, coming from a place of desolation due to the sudden death of his fellow soldier, Curt Lemon. He provides this backstory as an explanation as to why Rat’s nature has become twisted, and gives the example of Rat attempting to care for a baby water buffalo, yet in the end shoots it to death. O’Brien uses the abrupt contradiction of Rat trying to be gentle toward it as “he bent forward and whispered something, as if talking to a pet, then he shot it in the throat” (1156) to convey the passionate frustration Rat holds towards the death of Curt Lemon—whose devastated and confused emotions cannot be iterated with words. The compelling, silent understanding between the lines of the text of what Rat must have been going through transcends across the page to the reader, which is what becomes most pertinent in the story. Finishing “How to Tell a True War Story,” O’Brien introduces a woman character who represents the hypothetical perspectives and reactions a reader may have towards his narrative. He states that “as a rule she hates war stories; she can’t understand why people want to wallow in all the blood and gore. But this one she liked” (1159). This quotation supports O’Brien’s argument that the generally-accepted idea of a war story revolves around the war itself—the fighting, the deaths, the bloodshed. However, all of those topics are, in fact, not significant compared to the descriptions of the camaraderie between soldiers, how their relationships evolve and digress, and the reader’s responsiveness to the story. The purpose of literature itself is to engender an emotional response, which is, as O’Brien proposes, what a sincere war story is truly meant to impart upon readers. O’Brien continuously draws attention back to how his stories make the reader feel rather than getting stuck on what really happened. Since the general public will never be able to completely grasp what it is like to be in the midst of a war, the primary understanding that the reader must acquire from these stories is a sympathetic position towards the soldiers in the war. To phrase it similarly to the way O’Brien does on page 1159, war stories aren’t simply war stories. They are love stories.

Literature
TutorMe
Question:

Annotate Tim O'Brien's "How to Tell a True War Story," calling attention to its basic literary features, paradoxes, tensions, major themes, distinctive word choices, and eccentricities. Using that information, generate a written “close reading” of preselected passages from the text.

Meriel O.
Answer:

O’Brien’s “How to Tell a True War Story” accomplishes the paradoxical way in which a war story reveals truth. Throughout the narrative, O’Brien recounts multiple stories from his time served overseas during the Vietnam war, using metafictional interjections to explain what a “true” war story consists of. He presents the tension that the events in true war stories do not necessarily have to be truthful—that there are different senses and rules of truth. In war stories, the most genuine truth is the raw emotions felt from the characters and sympathized by the reader. What holds most meaning in both war and war stories is the emotional experience. Such traumatic situations distort soldiers’ perceptions of reality and causes them to “lose [their] sense of the definite” (O’Brien 1158), and thus discredits the truth of what is really happening so that “nothing is ever absolutely true” (1158). O’Brien hones the reader’s attention to the fact that rather than the events coming first and the emotions following, he recalls stories from his emotions, and “what seems to happen becomes its own happening and has to be told that way” (1152). The need for telling what “seems to happen” is reasoned because what immediately feels true holds a more powerful, resonant, and strong meaning than what may have actually happened. One war-time occurrence that O’Brien recounts that may or may not have happened but is emotionally wholly and fervently true is that of Rat Kiley and the water buffalo. In this story, he illustrates his comrade, Rat, coming from a place of desolation due to the sudden death of his fellow soldier, Curt Lemon. He provides this backstory as an explanation as to why Rat’s nature has become twisted, and gives the example of Rat attempting to care for a baby water buffalo, yet in the end shoots it to death. O’Brien uses the abrupt contradiction of Rat trying to be gentle toward it as “he bent forward and whispered something, as if talking to a pet, then he shot it in the throat” (1156) to convey the passionate frustration Rat holds towards the death of Curt Lemon—whose devastated and confused emotions cannot be iterated with words. The compelling, silent understanding between the lines of the text of what Rat must have been going through transcends across the page to the reader, which is what becomes most pertinent in the story. Finishing “How to Tell a True War Story,” O’Brien introduces a woman character who represents the hypothetical perspectives and reactions a reader may have towards his narrative. He states that “as a rule she hates war stories; she can’t understand why people want to wallow in all the blood and gore. But this one she liked” (1159). This quotation supports O’Brien’s argument that the generally-accepted idea of a war story revolves around the war itself—the fighting, the deaths, the bloodshed. However, all of those topics are, in fact, not significant compared to the descriptions of the camaraderie between soldiers, how their relationships evolve and digress, and the reader’s responsiveness to the story. The purpose of literature itself is to engender an emotional response, which is, as O’Brien proposes, what a sincere war story is truly meant to impart upon readers. O’Brien continuously draws attention back to how his stories make the reader feel rather than getting stuck on what really happened. Since the general public will never be able to completely grasp what it is like to be in the midst of a war, the primary understanding that the reader must acquire from these stories is a sympathetic position towards the soldiers in the war. To phrase it similarly to the way O’Brien does on page 1159, war stories aren’t simply war stories. They are love stories.

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