All Quiet On The Western Front By Erich Remarque Essay

All Quiet On The Western Front By Erich Remarque Essay

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Fear, an emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat, a feeling that no one wants to go through on a serious level. Imagine suddenly waking up to the sounds of gunshots and bombs without warning or constantly being surrounded by formidable men bearing guns. These experiences were not unusual for Ishmael Beah, the author of the book A Long Way Gone, and Paul Baumer, the protagonist of All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Remarque. Both books are based off a war; however, All Quiet on the Western Front is based off Paul’s involvement in WWI and A Long Way Gone is about Ishmael’s exposure to the civil war within Sierra Leone. Although the books are different in content, they both show how fear or perhaps ignoring fear plays an important role in the lives of a young soldier. Annihilation, separation and mutilation are just a few of the several forms of fear. which all are apparent at some point in both of the novels. Some of these fears have a basic survival value, others, however, are reflexes that have to be learned and can also be weakened (Albrecht). Though fear might seem like a terrible thought stuck in our heads, we could not survive without its constant cause of anxiety and worry.
Annihilation or the “fear of death,” is the fear that is more easily recognized, especially when reading two books on war stories. Likewise, this would be the panicky feeling someone would get when looking over the edge of a towering building or bridge. This feeling of anxiety abruptly appeared in Ishmael at the beginning of chapter 5 when a few rebels had him and his friends at gunpoint. Regarding this, Ishmael quoted“I couldn’t hear their words, because all I could think about was deat...


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...e front to those of an animal, because they are far more quick and much less conscious (56.) In deadly war situations this may be the easiest way to cope with fears. Conversely, the fear of mutilation and separation are not ignored in the two books. For instance, if Ishmael would’ve ignored the sound of the wild pigs he would have been killed. As well as if Paul wouldn’t have been worried about getting split up with Kropp, then they would 've been separated. In all cases, fear is just a different way of giving information and should not necessarily be seen as a dreadful feeling. Without fear, neither of these books would display the true impact of war in the character’s lives. Consequently, the characters all experience fear, cope with fear and understand fear in similar ways that provide the books a deeper explanation of what experiencing war precisely resembled.

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