“The World War I Los Angeles airplane” by Richard Brautigan Essay

Brautigan / story / World War I / message / loneliness

Essay Topic:

The theme of loneliness in “The World War I Los Angeles airplane” by Richard Brautigan.

Essay Questions:

How does Richard Brautigan’s “The World War I Los Angeles airplane” reveal the life of a ordinary man? What does the author revel through the death of the character’s father-in-law? How is the theme of loneliness revealed throughout the story?

Thesis Statement:

Richard Brautigan in his “The World War I Los Angeles airplane” has done an outstanding job in making people think over how important a life of an ordinary man is.

 

“The World War I Los Angeles airplane” by Richard Brautigan Essay

 

Introduction: The greatest manifestation of a literature talent is to able to put inside a short story a very big and important message. Richard Brautigan in his “The World War I Los Angeles airplane” has done an outstanding job in making people think over how important a life of an ordinary man is. In his story he puts up the question of the value of the life and death of an old man that was a hero but later on was forgotten by everyone. He tries to make the reader feel of how desperate life can be if society stops valuing people and their lives; how indifferent people can be if a war hero ” …was found lying dead near the television set on the front room floor of a small rented house in Los Angeles". The author puts a very deep meaning in his story.

Through the death of the character’s father-in-law and everything that is found out about the life of the old man that did not interest anybody before Brautigan showed how much people could have learned from this man. How they could feel the rainbow he knew so well and could have shared his experience through his stories. Could have felt the entire spiritual heritage that the old man had behind his shoulders. But now it is too late…Who can be blamed for being so indifferent to close people? Could the life of this old man be different from what it was? Could his only mean of communication with the outside world – the TV set have been substituted by a real contact, real admiration for what he was and love for just being himself? The answer is: yes! In the story the author through the description of the life of this man shows how his life was filled with hope, that his life was worthy. But only when he dies he is recalled. And is not it the responsibility of close people to take care of the old people feeling needed and respected?The author indicates that the post-war children do not remember and value what their parents did. His story is a call, a call to pay attention to people that live like this old man. The young generation, are the primary addressees of Brautigan’s message. He wants people to change and never to be able to say in a cold voice: ”Your father died this afternoon”.It is a story of a kind man, that always showed respect to his employees, a story of a dreamer that found himself in his last days with a bottle of wine near the TV set. As through the story the narrator keeps “thinking about what death means to us all”, the author wants us to do the same and try to change something in our lives and the lives of other people.

Conclusion: It is loneliness that Brautigan shows in his story. It is the loneliness that could have been avoided. It is life that nowadays, as the author points out, that has no value for people. Son-in –law along with the reader realizes it throughout the whole story. Owing to Richard Brautigan and his “The World War I Los Angeles airplane” people around may think about changing their ways and starting thinking with more admiration about the lives not only of famous heroes, but start treating every person’s life as a heroic one and worth of the same admiration.

Bibliography:

1. Burrows, Russell “Richard Brautigan” Western American Literature/1988

2. Richard Brautigan “Renege of the Lawn”/New York/1972

 

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