Throughout their lives, people must deal with the horrific and violent side of humanity. The side of humanity is shown through the act of war. War is by far the most horrible thing that the human race has to go through. The participants in the war suffer irreversible damage by the atrocities they witness and the things they go through. In the novel “All Quiet on the Western Front" is the description by Erich Maria Remarque of the graphic violence and gore and the psychological pain that the average soldier endured on the western front.
The effects of romanticized wars are seen throughout Slaughterhouse Five and All Quiet on the Western Front. The false visions of war that soldiers blindly go into mentally destroy them little by little. For the women and men back home, the families, their ideas of what their loved one is going through is constantly changing with the novels and movies romanticizing war and the war heroes. Kurt Vonnegut has said before that he believes civilization was terminated in World War I and that "Much of the blame is the malarkey that artist have created to glorify war, which we all know, is nonsense, and a good deal worse that that –romantic pictures of battle, and of the dead men in uniform and all that" (Vitale par. 4).
Owen was taken out of the war where he began writing poems. He wrote his poems to show both his anger at the cruelty and waste of war. (BBC) Owen used this poem to show the misconception that war is. While people outside of the war thought it was honorable, soldiers like Owen himself, know how cruel and it really is. Through the use of imagery, figurative language, and tone, Owen is able to portray the misconception and cruelty of war.
Owens uses continuous imagery of his friend’s suffering to make the reader feel gut-wrenching emotions of fear and anxiety. In Kevin Powers The Yellow Birds, narrator John Bartle recalls “the...guts… and everything stinking like metal and burning garbage...You walk around and the smell is deep down into you”. Power’s uses gored images and putrid smells to invoke the reader to imagine the battlefield as a terribly malevolent place. Writers use verbal irony to protest misleading ideas about war. In Stephen Crane’s “War is Kind”, Crane suggests “Do not weep, maiden, for war is kind./Because your lover threw wild hands toward the sky”(1-2).
Candide’s misfortune starts when the bulgur army had attacked the castle. Hence he was going to encounter the whole world and start to make his own fortune. His beloved Cunegonde as well suffered a lot either from violence guided to her or her suffers from misfortune. Every step he took he discovered a horrible problem that affect his outlook for the world. So Candide and Cunegonde blamed Pangloss a lot for his meaningless philosophy about the optimism.
In “The Song of the Mud,” Borden describes the major role mud plays in war and reveals the huge impact it has as it covers the soldier, corpses, clogs the machinery, and restricts the soldiers from their value.“of vile, incurable sores and innocent tongues,” "a devil's sick of sin,” the blood coming from “bitter as the cud,” and “obscene as cancer” are all examples of imagery that help readers perceive the agony of war and fully express the repugnancy to war. Moreover, Mary specifically uses evocative words such as “invincible,” “inexhaustible,” “intrusive” and “impertinent” to illustrate the dreadful state of the fighters due to the mud and to generate a powerful tone. Similarly, Owen used words such as “guttering” and “froth-corrupted” to create that same tone as he described the gas attack he experienced and the resentment he has of war in this last stanza. On top of that, both poems contain irony to signify the opposite of what is said, set an ironic tone and to bring forth the authors’ aversion to war indirectly. For example,“The Song of the Mud” contains the line “covers the hills like satin” which is pleasing and makes you feel at ease which contradicts the fact that war is destructive and horrifying.
Therefore, he conscripts himself for military service. However, it soon dawns on him that war is brutal and jeopardous, somewhat contradictory to what he visualizes before. The soldier’s wound, the corpses and the flag symbolize Henry’s most wide-eyed innervations, the cruelty of the war as well as Henry’s maturity. The wound, without a doubt, is the most far-reaching symbol of the story. To Henry, wounds are “ a red badge of courage”, it represents the soldier dignity and offers one with great renown.
In one instance, it is used to convey that the mourners believe they should try to prevent such a tragedy from occurring again because of the impact the deaths had on them. For example, in the fourth, stanza it states, “for there we strike by day and by night, / there we kick by day and by night, / there we spit by day and by night / until the doors of hatred fall” the repetition allows the reader to realize that the narrator is frustrated by the war that has caused the militiamen to die. The repetition of “there we…by day and by night” indicates that the mourners are greatly impacted by the militiamen’s deaths because they are willing to take action “by day and by night” to make sure this does not happen again. In addition, repetition is also used to relay how strongly the mourners feel about the loss of the soldiers. They feel “more than anger, more than scorn, more / than weeping,” and the “mothers [are] pierced by anguish and death”.
Siegfried Sassoon takes on a narrative style in his poem “The Rear-Guard”, and combines it with complex syntax to portray the speaker’s horrific experiences throughout war. The poem exposes a soldier’s experience of finding the violent battlefield above through the death-filled tunnels. Pairing the speaker’s point of view with specific word choice clearly demonstrates the excruciating mental and physical pain being a soldier inflicts, and leaves a glooming effect on the reader. Sassoon fills the poem with explicit imagery to reveal the pacifist theme he is trying to convey. Sassoon wants the audience to realize that war and violence is not the solution, and he reveals this through his poetry.
Kurt Vonnegut wrote Slaughterhouse-Five to portray the gruesome scene of World War II and its many flaws. To do this, Vonnegut uses irony as a way of attacking the corruption of war itself. The irony of Slaughterhouse-Five manifests itself through the conversations between Billy Pilgrim and his fellow soldiers during the war. Most of the ironic quotes in this novel speak in relation to Billy's experience in the war. A direct example of this irony is, "Billy went from total dark to total light, found himself back in the war, back in the delousing station again" (90).