Images of War
By Connor Huntingfield
Literature since the time of the Ancient Greeks glorified and glossed over the horrors of war, making it seem as a worthwhile, honourable, and romantic male endeavour. This same philosophy carried on even until past the time of America’s bloody Civil War and the war heroes of poetry, much like in the days of ancient civilization, were put on a pedestal and treated as national treasures. For the most part, war, although undeniably tragic, was viewed as necessary and in many ways applicable. Wilfred Owen's poem "Dulce Et Decorum Est" and "Anthem for Doomed Youth" was written during his World War 1 Experience 28 July 1914 - 11 November 1918. Owen an officer in the British Army deeply opposed the intervention of one nation into another. The poem explains how the British press and public comforted themselves with the fact that, terrible that is was, all young men dying in the war were dying noble, heroic deaths. The reality was quite different; Owen wanted to throw the war in the face of the reader to illustrate how vile and inhumane war really was. Innocence
Owen explains in his poem that people were encouraged to fight for their country, but in reality, fighting for your country is simply sentencing yourself to an unnecessary premature death. The name of the poem relates to Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Patria Mori - It is sweet and right to die for your country. In other words, it is a wonderful and great honour to fight and die for your country. The most important thing is that the title is ironic. The intention was not so much to induce pity as to shock, especially civilians at home who believed war was noble and glorious. The quote; "Bent double, like old beggars under sacks" is a simile, which compares the men to how beggars walk when the soldiers march. By starting the poem off with an image of men "doubled" it creates the possibility that the soldiers really have become two people, the men they were before the war which is...
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