How Does Wilfred Owen 's Representation Of The Experiences Of Individuals Contribute?

How Does Wilfred Owen 's Representation Of The Experiences Of Individuals Contribute?

Length: 1481 words (4.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

How does Wilfred Owen’s representation of the experiences of individuals contribute to his wider concerns about “the pity of war”?
In your response, make detailed reference to “Futility” and ONE other of Wilfred Owen’s poems set for study.


The purpose of poetry is to convey the meaning and understanding of the composer. Wilfred Owen conveys meaning in his poetry through the concept of pity as experienced through war. In his poems, “Futility” and “Strange Meeting”, Owen subverts the traditional impression of war as being gallant and patriotic and instead utilises his first-hand experience of war and the experience of soldiers as a collective, to affirm his own understanding and concern of war. In doing this, Owen delves into the everlasting effect of war on the individual, the foundation of pity, and the impact that withholding the truth has on those subjected to the trauma of war.

The effects of intense human experiences, such as war, remain etched in the human psyche longer than the suffering itself. Throughout “Strange Meeting”, the everlasting scars of trauma are shown through the idea that “none will break ranks” as soldiers have been conditioned into understanding that it is not the norm. Even at the close of the war, the soldiers won’t leave the battlefield even though entire “nations trek from progress” because it is not the etiquette of battle. Instead they will wait to be slaughtered as all others had been and as Owen was too, a few days before the declared armistice of World War I. It is the effect of Owen using his own personal experience that contributes to his understanding of “the pity of war”. The alliteration in the line “foreheads of men have bled where no wounds were” highlights that soldiers as a collective...


... middle of paper ...


...wen confided “my subject is war and the pity of war” and at the time, the apparent pity of war was the truth untold in that war was supposedly heroic. Owen portrays the effect of the untold truth in his line “courage was mine and I had mystery; wisdom was mine and I had mastery” during his poem “Strange Meeting”. The anaphoras in the repetition of “was mine” emphasises and draws attention to the meaning of a change in understanding of the line. The personal pronoun of “I” aids in placing Owen directly into his poetry so that he can gain closure from his experiences and prove that his opinion of war, although not similar of the time period, has accurate grounding because of his first-hand experience. It depicts that the time he was courageous was the time he was ignorant and once he gained wisdom through experience, he was able to understand the true nature of war.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Strange Meeting, by Wilfred Owen Essay

- The description of war has been given the imagery of hell. The poem “Strange Meeting” by Wilfred Owen was written during the time of war. Wilfred Owen was a British poet that wrote and based his writings on events in World War I. Wilfred Owen was a British Poet that wrote and based on events in World War I. “Strange Meeting” was written in 1918 and then later published after his passing. Majority of his poems was written in a little over a year, from 1917 to 1918, while only five of his poems were published....   [tags: literary analysis, wilfred owen]

Better Essays
934 words (2.7 pages)

Wilfred Owen's Life and Accomplishments Essay

- The First World War not only reshaped boundaries, watched empires rise and fall, but it also saw a drastic change in the literary art, and the view of war and all its “glory”. With authors such as Wilfred Owen, the world was beginning to get exposed to the brutality of war from the front line. Like most poets of his time, Owen wrote in the modern period. “And watch the white eyes writhing in his face, His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs” (Dulce et Decorum Est)....   [tags: wilfred owen, world war, war poets]

Better Essays
786 words (2.2 pages)

Wilfred Owen's Poetry and Pity of War Essay

- Wilfred Owen's Poetry and Pity of War Through his poetry Wilfred Owen wished to convey, to the general public, the PITY of war. In a detailed examination of three poems, with references to others, show the different ways in which he achieved this Wilfred Owen was born in Oswestry, 18th March 1893. He was working in France when the war began, tutoring a prominent French family. When the war started he began serving in the Manchester Regiment at Milford Camp as a Lieutenant. He fought on the Western Front for six months in 1917, and was then diagnosed with War Neurosis (shell shock)....   [tags: Wilfred Owen War Poems Essays]

Better Essays
3681 words (10.5 pages)

Anthem for Doomed Youth by Wilfred Owen Essay

- Anthem for Doomed Youth by Wilfred Owen The sonnet ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’, by Wilfred Owen, criticizes war. The speaker is Wilfred Owen, whose tone is first bitter, angry and ironic. Then it’s filled with intense sadness and an endless feeling of emptiness. The poet uses poetic techniques such as diction, imagery, and sound to convey his idea. The title, ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’, gives the first impression of the poem. An ‘anthem’, is a song of praise, perhaps sacred, so we get the impression that the poem might me about something religious or joyous....   [tags: Anthem Doomed Youth Wilfred Owen Essays]

Better Essays
1188 words (3.4 pages)

Wilfred Owen's Poetry and War Essay

- Wilfred Owen's Poetry and War Wilfred Owen is now seen as one of the most important of the many poets of the First World War. He was born the son of a railway worker in Shropshire, and educated at schools in Shrewsbury and Liverpool. His devoted mother encouraged his early interests in music and poetry. When he could not afford a university education, he went abroad to teach English in France. He was there when war broke out in 1914, and decided to return to England to volunteer for the army. After training, he became an officer and was sent to France at the end of 1916, seeing service first in the Somme sector....   [tags: Wilfred Owen Poetry Poems War Essays]

Better Essays
2646 words (7.6 pages)

Essay on Wilfred Owen's War Poetry

- Wilfred Owen's War Poetry If Wilfred Owen's war poetry had one main aim, it would be to expose "the old lie": that war is always a good and justified thing and that it is a good thing to die for one's country. Owen had experienced first hand the horrors and tragedies of the First World War, so he inevitably wanted to break open the false façade and let the world know the truth. I am going to explore what I find to be three of his best poems and show how he achieved this aim. Owen was born on the 18th of March 1893 in Shropshire, England....   [tags: Wilfred Owen War Poetry Poems Literature Essays]

Better Essays
2786 words (8 pages)

Dulce Et Docorum Est by Wilfred Owen Essays

- Dulce Et Docorum Est by Wilfred Owen The World War One poet, Wilfred Owen, wrote two poems named ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ and ‘Disabled’. The main themes running throughout both poems are that of the pain and worthlessness of war, and the crime towards the young soldiers it was. The beginning and ending of these two poems link these ideas through the use of imagery contrast and language features. The poem ‘disabled’ begins by describing a physically and mentally destroyed soldier, clearly a result of war, welcoming darkness to come and end his misery by taking him away....   [tags: Wilfred Owen Poetry Analysis]

Free Essays
843 words (2.4 pages)

Wilfred Owen and his Pity of War Essay

- Through His Poetry Wilfred Owen Wished to Convey, to the General Public, the Pity of War. In a Detailed Examination of these Poems, With Reference to Others, Show the Different ways in which He achieved this. Wilfred Owen fought in the war as an officer in the Battle of the Somme. He entered the war in January of 1917. However he was hospitalised for war neurosis and was sent for rehabilitation at Craiglockhart War Hospital in Edinburgh that May. At Craiglockhart he met Siegfried Sassoon, a poet and novelist whose grim antiwar works were in harmony with Wilfred Owen's concerns....   [tags: Wilfred Owen Poems Poetry War Literature Essays]

Free Essays
3001 words (8.6 pages)

Love Presented in Poems by Wilfred Owen Essay

- Love Presented in Poems by Wilfred Owen Explore how the theme of love is presented in Birdsong and a selection of poems by Wilfred Owen. Loving attitudes, though perhaps not as prominent as themes such as violence and pride, are intimately observed and explored in Sebastian Faulks' Birdsong and in many of Wilfred Owen's War poems. Each aspect of love, as seen through the eyes of this First World War soldier and Faulks' characters, is as interesting as it is diverse, allowing an impervious insight into the psychological effects that the War had on these men....   [tags: Wilfred Owen Poems Poetry Love Essays]

Better Essays
2484 words (7.1 pages)

Essay on Wilfred Owen's Poetry

- Wilfred Owen's Poetry In this essay, I have decided to analyse two poems by the war poet Wilfred Owen, taken from his writings on the First World War. Both of these poems ('Dulce et Decorum Est' and 'Anthem for Doomed Youth') portray Owen's bitter angst towards the war, but do so in very different ways. Owen developed many of his poetic techniques at Craiglockhart Military Hospital, where he spent much of the war as an injured soldier, but it was only through the influence of fellow soldier and poet, Siegrfried Sassoon, that he began capturing his vivid visions of the war in the form of poetry....   [tags: Wilfred Owen Poets Poems Poetry Essays]

Better Essays
2131 words (6.1 pages)