The lost generation is a generation who will never be the same, throughout the book All Quiet On the Western Front, many of the characters will face moments where they realize the war has ruined them, ultimately, becoming the lost generation themselves. In the book, All Quiet On the Western front, the main character is Paul Baumer, an eighteen-year-old boy. Many of his classmates also enlisted to be in the war, they were around Pauls age. One of the reasons why the war takes such a huge toll on the soldiers is because they are being forced into a state of mind where it is either kill or be killed. They are not children in high school anymore.
Ishmael is unable to think of his life before being in hell, and his only memories are of war now. These memories of hell destroyed the memory of his family. Another effect of the war is the numbness to violence. Ishmael is at the rehabilitation center with other boys who were in the war. He discovers some of the boys are fighting for the rebels side, and with partisan views, a huge fight starts.
We find out Paul and his friends volunteered to fight because becoming a soldier was thought to be a great and honorable title to hold during that time in Germany. Paul and his friends resent their decision and their elders after they go to training camp. There the are trained by Corporal Himmelstoss who is known for his brutal tactics. Almost half of their men are dead and new recruits are brought in. Paul and his friends help out the new recruits because it turns out men are dying faster than they can be trained so the new soldiers have no knowledge of fighting on the front lines.
World War I was one of the most barbaric and horrendous events that impacted world history. In the novel, All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich M. Remarque drives home this brutality through his main character. The theme brutality and carnage is displayed through the presence of death, violence, and the guilt the soldiers must carry within them. The soldiers were permanently scarred by the events they witnessed as death is always around them.. At the end Paul realizes that everything flashes before his eyes after all his friends had died,” I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how people are set against one another…” (Remarque, 263).
These consequences are most impactful because of how dehumanization allowed the soldiers to kill mercilessly, which connects to how they gain a sense of guilty after the war when they have time to reflect. Unfortunately, their guilty consciences became so unbearable to the point where some would commit suicide. This exact scenario occurs to Paul in All Quiet on the Western Front. During a battle, Paul lost his senses as he is caught in the heat of the battle. Suddenly, a random body falls on him and “[Paul] strikes the [French soldier without thinking] at all” (Remarque 216).
But beyond that their life did not extend. And of that nothing's remains. It simply crumbled under the war. What happens to these young men who only see violence, despair, death, torture, the suffering of trench warfare and the gruesome detailed image of limbs and bodies dissemble; as described in the novel. They are Broken, burnt out, rootless and without hope.
In the year 1914, a war started that would turn innocent people against each other, and have aftermaths that include thousands of people dead due to new equipment like tanks, gas attacks, and hand-to-hand combat. In this war there was a soldier named Paul Bäumer who is a German nineteen year old who has made friends that will last a lifetime during this experience, but has also felt immense pain. His daily routine is to sleep, eat, and fight in the trenches, and he experiences death every day. Most soldiers view death as a recurring event, but Paul views it as wretchedness, which makes him different from others by caring about his comrades more than others. Paul shows many qualities through this experience of being a soldier in the First World War, and he learns what is necessary in life, which takes some people years to figure out.
Frank stated he attempted numerous suicide attempts. His reasoning to his attempts wasn’t just the war ,but also a divorce which deeply impacted him and a family which was once loving and peaceful; now torn apart by alcohol. Overall the wr had changed him, a man who was a perfectly normal productive member of society, now suffering side effects from the war. Another individual John F. Ferguson , Vietnam veteran who served from 1967- 1971 in the 15th counter intelligence team. Ferguson one of many vietnam veterans describes his war experience to have been physically exhausting and terrifying business.Ferguson states that the vietnam war was a horrible involvement .
Civilians often assume that when someone joins the army and goes to war, he constantly fights in battles and accomplishes it in a heroic and honorable way. But what they fail to understand is the horrible killing and pointless taking of human life. In Ernest Hemingway’s “Soldier’s Home” the character Krebs in the story reveals the differences between the reality soldiers experience in war versus the illusion civilians back home assume about the soldiers ' experiences. While Tim O’Brien’s “The Man I Killed” and Kevin Tillman’s “After Pats Birthday” explain and point out the actualities and problems of war not being what it is made out to be. A great majority of the public believe when the soldiers leave to war they expect to be treated well and come back home as a hero.