Different Attitudes to War in Post-1914 War Poetry Essay

Different Attitudes to War in Post-1914 War Poetry Essay

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Different Attitudes to War in Post-1914 War Poetry


Rupert Brooke and Wilfred Owen are poets who fought for England in the
First World War. Both poets depict the same topic of war, but through
different views and opinions. Despite them pertaining to the similarly
themed subject, their language and tone invoke contrasting feelings in
readers and affects their impression of war in opposite ways. Examples
of these differences can be seen in the two poems by Rupert Brook 'The
Dead (iii) and 'The Soldier' and two by Wilfred Owen 'Anthem for
Doomed Youth' and 'Dulce etDecorum Est'.

Rupert Brooke writes 'The Dead (iii)' in an extremely relaxed and
romantic mood.Brooke had not experienced war, so with this in mind the
poem seems very clear and concise. Brooke aims to show us the glory
that is brought about by dying for your country. He thinks that war is
a simple and dignified cause. He aims to make us more patriotic and
convince us to die for our country in war.

The first line is very energetic and joyous for a horrendous subject
such as war. This may mean that Brooke tries to symbolise enthusiasm
and glory. Since bugles are used at a grand occasion, but also
militarily charges and retreats he may be trying to indicate that
dying for your country is a glorious way to end your life.

"Blow out, you bugles, over the rich Dead!"

As he says, it has made them 'rich'. This probably means that they are
wealthy with glory, praise and admiration. He makes no mention of the
pain and suffering in war. The third line explains that dying has
again made them important.

But, dying has made us rarer gifts than gold.

Gold is very rare, so...


... middle of paper ...


...e still fresh in his mind and the public's.
Owen, on the other hand, wrote his poem three years into the war and
in that time was able to see and accept the realities of war, so his
perception of war was changed to bitterness and this was reflected in
his many poems such as Anthem for Doomed Youth in which he reveals the
same feelings on war as he does in Dulce et Decorum Est. In one of his
previous poems, The Ballad of Peace and War, he himself had supported
the idea of,

'How sweet it is to live in peace with others, but sweeter still far
more meet to die in war with brothers. '

Therefore, it would be concluded that the only reason why the two
poets have conflicting ideologies of war, is time. If Brooke had
experienced more of the war he might have wrote later poems that
portrayed the same bitterness as Owens.

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