Selected Shorts: The Things They Carried
Sunday, September 18, 2011
Tim O’Brien’s stirring and poignant tale of foot soldiers in the Vietnam War shapes this entire program.
“The Things They Carried” is a powerful fictional depiction of the reality of America’s doomed enterprise in Vietnam. It is the title story of a book in which O’Brien follows one platoon of “grunts”, and its fantastic literary conceit is that their experience can best be conveyed by detailed listings of the actual things that the men carried in their backpacks and pockets, and on their shoulders and necks. When the cataloguing of these things makes the imaginative leap into a description of the less physical things they carried--to include such burdens as guilt, and fear, and memories—the piece earns its status as a great American short story.
The reader is Dylan Baker, whose numerous film and television credits include appearances on “The Good Wife”; “Law and Order”; “Monk; and the “Spiderman” films.
The SELECTED SHORTS theme is Roger Kellaway’s “Come to the Meadow.”
"The Things They Carried," by Tim O’Brien, read by Dylan Baker.
For additional works featured on SELECTED SHORTS, please visit http://www.wnyc.org/shows/shorts/
We’re interested in your response to these programs. Please comment on this site or visit www.selectedshorts.org