Essay on The, All Quiet On The Western Front By Erich Maria Remarque

Essay on The, All Quiet On The Western Front By Erich Maria Remarque

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In a deep, muddy trench, a lone soldier lies, a silver bullet embedded in his abdomen. He clutches his side, screaming in pain, crying for help -- but no one is listening. The sky slowly darkens, and his voice becomes no more than a faint rasping, until it fades into nothingness. Millions of soldiers found themselves in similar situations during World War I, also known as the Great War, which involved multiple European powers; most notably, Germany, France, Britain, and Russia. Written from the perspective of Paul Baumer, a 19-year-old German soldier, All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque follows his journey as he is thrown into the chaos of World War I. At the warfront, Paul witnesses countless horrors that gradually strip away his hope for a future, thereby realizing the deception of the authority figures in his life. Through characterization and parallelism, Remarque visualizes the growing chasm that isolates Paul and his comrades from the world they once knew. Similarly, Wilfred Owen’s poem “Dulce et Decorum Est” describes a soldier who witnesses the death of his comrade from poisonous gas. Using imagery and irony, Owen presents a blunt contrast between the propaganda practiced for recruitment and the truth behind the suffering endured by the soldiers. While presented in different formats, both literary works criticize the romanticism of war, arguing that there is no glory in the suffering and killing caused by conflict.
The imagery and figurative language in “Dulce et Decorum Est” highlights the suffering of the soldiers, contradicting any notion of romanticized war. Owen uses the simile “like old beggars” (1) to describe the soldiers, which is ironic in that most of the soldiers...


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...duty towards their country. Because they are compelled to provide other motivations for the soldiers to fight, the reader concludes that even the authority figures doubt the glory in war.
Through their literary works, both Remarque and Owen convey the suffering caused by war, challenging a romanticized perspective. Remarque places emphasis on how authority figures with no first-hand experience pressure younger generations to enlist, causing the deaths of many. On the other hand, Owen highlights the horrors of war and the fate of those who experience them.. Propaganda and pressure from superiors play a large role in recruitment for war, but there is usually little truth behind what is preached. If the world continues to romanticize war on impressionable youth, all of humanity will eventually find itself as the lone soldier in the trench, calling out into the silence.

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