Anonymous asked in Education & ReferenceHomework Help · 1 decade ago

What themes in American History are present in the movie Forrest Gump?

How does Forrest exemplify the American Dream?

How is Forrest a symbolic character?

What purpose does Jenny served in the film in terms of American History?

How important was the Vietnam episode to the movie? How could it parallel American History?

Why does this film appeal to so many people (especially when it was made in 1994)?

Please answer 1, 2, 3 or all of the questions asked!


And this isn't just my homework. I'm trying to write an essay, and I'm two pages short of the required eight pages, and I'm only asking questions relating to what I've already wrote. I just wanted to make that clear.

10 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    I acctually just finished a paper about this type of thing in my AP US History class, i would love to be of some assistance.

    Forrest is an example of the American Dream, because he rises above the oppressor, and makes something of himself, in the end achieveing everything any normal person would want, fame, help for his country, a large house, a small family, and meeting the presidents.

    Forrest is symbolic ESPICALLY in the part where he is playing ping-pong because at the time nixion was putting into effect the ping-pong dipolmacy.

    Jenny shows how the social conflicts changed from decade to decade, she was a sexualy abused child, became a hippy, got into drugs, because a yippy (more of a family person) and then in the end got aids which was the uprising problems of the 80's where the film ended.

    It was one of the most important parts of the movie, it showed not only what a solider when through, but how they were treated once they returned home and how little support they got for what they were trying to do for their country.

    it appels to so many people because we all know someone who was in one of those places and so we easily identify with the moive, not only so but it helps us learn and be more prideful about our pasts and our realtives and realize that things are not always as they seem.

    hope that helped some.

    Source(s): advanced placement class of highschool.
  • 1 decade ago

    Forrest manages to become personally involved in most of the critical events that take place in American History from the late 1950s until the early 1980s. This includes the Vietnam War, the Watergate Scandal, the Civil Rights and Anti-Vietnam War protest movements, and the Computer Revolution. Forrest even meets three American Presidents as well as Elvis Presley and John Lennon.

  • 1 decade ago

    The post-war era of the 40's and 50's in the South. The introduction of Elvis, the glory days of coach Bear Bryant and the Crimson Tide, Vietnam, Post Vietnam, The death of President Kennedy, the shame of President Nixon and Watergate, the refusal of President Johnson to run for re-election. The entire space race, the discovery of HIV and AIDS, the introduction of the "**** Happens" bumper sticker, the introduction of the "Smiley" face t-shirts, Apple computers, Just watch the movie...

    Forrest Gump started with nothing, worked hard, struggled , stayed honest, and never lost his faith. He was rewarded when his hard work paid off, and he became a millionare nearly overnight.

    He represents the underdog that exists in all of us. He never gives up. He never loses faith.

    Not real sure how Jenny represented American History, other than her introducing us to the Anti- War movement during Vietnam, and later symbolizing the tragedy of drug addiction, and AIDS.

    One would have to watch it to understand why it appeals to so many people. it is beautifully written, and Tom Hanks is at his best. It's a story about the human heart, how strong it can be, and how easily it can be broken.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The Hippie movement, The Vietnam conflict, It touched lightly on the AIDS disease. The Watergate scandal, The Civil rights movement.

    I think that Forrest exemplified the American Dream because he was able to achieve dispite his shortcomings.

    I cant think of anything that Jenny did except reject Forrest time and time again but I do believe that she contracted HIV. The Vietnam episode was important to the movie because it was our most controversial conflict and it only seemed natural to put a dimwit in the middle of it. I cant think of anything to parallel the war scene except maybe Cripus Attucks who just happened to get caught up in the beginnings of the Revolutionary war.

    I was curious about the movie because the main character was mentally challenged and yet he had a very fullfilling life.

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  • 1 decade ago

    1. Forrest truly lived his life and experienced so many huge historical events.

    3. Jenny lived through many historical things as well, but in a different way than Forrest. She lived sort of a parallel life to his in the counterculture as a hippie and everything.

    4. The Vietnam bit showed what it was like there and it emphasized it's vast importance in American history and how much it changed so many people lives in different ways.

    5. It appeals to people because of how Forrest experienced so much in his life and he was blissfully ignorant of so many important things going on around him. All he cared about was his family and friends.

  • 1 decade ago

    Forest exemplifies what everyone aims for in the American Dream,to do well in life and live life,to be successful and believe in your dreams.

    Symbolic as he symbolizes what we all are aiming for,truth ,justice and the American way.

    Behind everyman there's a can and does conquer all.

    compare Vietnam with the gulf war,Saddam Husein for instance.

    1994 was only a blink away in terms of history moments.

    history repeats itself and so many people young and old can relate to some era of the film.

    good luck

  • Mary
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Minus the Theatrics you show, surely you not suggesting the "WHYS" excuse the "Rock Throwing " ? We may as well open all the prison doors than, they all have some hurt. I can understand ( as most do) some emotions and hurts and still not excuse bad actions. Edit to your Additional Details: So it's okay for you to call some others out for what you feel is their bad behavior and judge them for their views, which they may also have reason for, but not for other people to do? Good example of hypocritical. Setting healthy boundaries and giving back responsibility is sometimes what people need more. And giving people what they need is usually better than what they want. Not making excuses for rock throwers. One doesn't always have to wittiness an event to make wise judgements about them or their actions. Although it does happen, not all juries make unwise decisions. And it's people who are not demanding accountability and responsibility who are letting many badly behaved people go on. And it doesn't help them. So have some rock thrower even indicated. It can't go both ways, two ways for one and not the other. Your thinking is off here. Poor thinking, inevitably causes problems, wastes time and energy, engenders frustration and pain. " Real " Critical thinking is not just those who say they do and may think they are, even if they have somehow convinced others into believing that, it is the disciplined art of ensuring that you use the best thinking you are capable of in "any" set of circumstances. Your not going to be as pleasing to as many people but your going live a better life more respected by God, standing by actions that ask for accountability and responsibility from all. Not excusing I myself find excusing bad behavior is despicable often. Sometimes even more than the one showing bad behavior

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Because he comes from nothing to something

    He is symbolic in the fact that he is just an ordinary person and he influences everyone around him in a positive way

    no answer

    because mama says stupid is as stupid does

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    don't just put your homework on here!

    1. he goes through all parts of life. he's gotten a good education, succeeds to move on to college, starts a family, has a house, its the american dream.

    2. she goes through what a lot of people from that time went through.

    3. i dont know

    4. look it up

    5. figure it out by yourself

  • cheryl
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    I think it depends

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