All Quiet on the Western Front Essays: Catalyst for Change

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All Quiet on the Western Front: Catalyst for Change All Quiet on the Western Front is a book written by Erich Maria Remarque. It was a book written to reflect the human cost of war. It shows us how war has a hidden face that most people do not see until it is too late. In the novel, he describes a group of young men who at first think war is glorious. But as the war drags on, the group discovers how war is not all it is set out to be. As the war went on, they saw their friends either die or be permanently wounded. Then the end comes when there was only one person left. All Quiet on the Western Front takes place in Germany where a group of young boys are first encouraged to join the military. Thinking that it would be a great adventure, they enlisted, not knowing the fate that lies before them. At first, the group is sent to training. They aren’t in a serious mood, thinking that war conditions aren’t as bad as they really are. When the boys are sent to the front, it is only then when they start to realize how war is not great. This is when the boys are cramped into the trenches. Some of the soldiers were shell-shocked because of the constant bombardment. When one of the boys was wounded, he was taken to a hospital where there were many wounded soldiers. Some soldiers had to have parts of their bodies amputated in order to survive. When Kemmerich was in the hospital, Müller asked for his pair of boots. The boots was a visible reminder to the boys of the cost of war. Paul then has to face his own conscience when he kills one of the Frenchmen. He doesn’t see the face of an enemy but just a face of another human being. He tries to comfort himself by promising to help the fallen soldier's family. After Paul is relieved from the front line, he decides to go on leave and return home. But when he tries to tell every one of the horrible conditions of the trenches, everybody either laughs him off or calls him a coward. Paul returns before his leave actually ended, wishing that he had never come home. In the end, when Paul loses Kat, Paul realizes that the war has destroyed his way of life.

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