Thursday, February 3, 2011
The Fine Line Between Allegory And Truth
Truth is an event which actually occurred. It is subjective but invariable. O'Brien asserts that he could truthfully tell his daughter that he did kill someone, or that he didn't kill anyone. He is not stretching the "allegorical" truth. He can rationalize what he did/didn't do in any fashion he desires. The "allegorical" truth is subjective, and therefore infallible. He could tell his daughter the allegorical version of his time in Vietnam until he thinks she's ready to handle and understand it. When the daughter is of the right age, he should tell her the actual truth and explain the allegorical version. Recognizing the dichotomy between allegory and truth is essential to understanding the overall message which O'Brian is attempting to proffer.