Analysis of 3 works on the horrors of war. Bao Ninh's novel THE SORROW OF WAR, Michael Cimino's film THE DEER HUNTER, and Nguyen thi Minh Hgoc's short story THE MADAGASCAR PLUM. Vietnam war setting. Muteness of characters as a human response to the war. Common message of each work.
All three of the works--Bao Ninh's novel The Sorrow of War, the Michael Cimino-directed film The Deer Hunter, and Nguyen thi Minh Hgoc's short story... more
All three of the works--Bao Ninh's novel The Sorrow of War, the Michael Cimino-directed film The Deer Hunter, and Nguyen thi Minh Hgoc's short story "The Madagascar Plum"--send powerful anti-war messages in which muteness in characters is used to convey the horror of war. In other words, that horror is so overwhelming that the characters who are most deeply affected by it are rendered incapable of even expressing themselves, their suffering, their rage, their helplessness, and any thought of emotion. They are, in a sense, completely deadened by the war, if we see self-expression as a requisite of true human existence, although they remain alive. The muteness of the three characters in the three works is also a kind of denial of what has happened to them. The little girl in Hgoc's story, for example, seems to be stuck in the past in her bombed village, returning to it to