Saturday, October 12, 2019
Courage in Pat Barkers Regeneration Essay -- Pat Barker Regeneration
Courage in Pat Barker's Regeneration During the Vietnam War, many Americans decided to choose conscientious objector status and serve the war effort in non-combative ways; others moved to Canada, leaving their families, their communities, and their nation because of strong political convictions. While some said these people were cowards and a disgrace to their families and their nation, others argued that those had just as much courage as the men on the front lines. Although moving to Canada was far less difficult than being sent to Vietnam, these Draft Dodgers proved they had courage to stand up for what they believed in. On pages eight and twenty-two of Pat Barker's Regeneration, two very highly esteemed awards are introduced, the Military Cross (MC) and the Victoria Cross (VC). The protagonist of this novel, Siegfried Sassoon, responds to his military honors by demonstrating two kinds of courage, one lauded by his government and popular opinion and one misunderstood and disdained by his society. Though Barker's novel presents these two types, she ultimately values courage of personal conviction. Not only does Sassoon exert this courage of personal conviction by writing a letter to his commanding officer, but also by throwing away one of the prestigious medals. The Military Cross (MC) Award was instituted December 28, 1915. The award is presented to officers of the rank of Captain or below, for "distinguished and meritorious services in battle" (Brew). Most often meritorious services in battle means crossing enemy lines and running through enemy trenches in order to save men of the officer's battalion. This award is ranked as one of the highest honors possible for an officer to attain, and is "clearly for gallant and dis... ...how they were perceived by different individuals in Regeneration, two different types of courage are seen: one that was applauded by the government and public opinion, and one that was misunderstood by Sassoon's society. It takes personal conviction exhibited through courageous acts to live with yourself in the face of a worldview at odds with your own. Works Cited Barker, Pat. Regeneration. New York: Plume, 1993. Brew, Steve. "Gallantry Medals Awarded to 41 Squadron Pilots." World War One. 2003. Veterans Affairs of Canada. 20 Apr. 2004 <http://brew.clients.ch/Medals41.htm>. Chapman, Mike. "Victoria Cross Facts." British Gallantry Awards. 1981. PE Abbott, JMA Tamplin. 19 Apr. 2004 <http://www.victoriacross.net/medal.asp>. Duffy, Michael. "Military Cross." First World War.Com. 2000-2004. 19 Apr. 2004 <http://www.firstworldwar.com/atoz/mc.htm>.