Effect Of Erich Maria Remarque's All Quiet On The Western Front

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The War that Changed War: The Settings Effect on Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front

World War I, the war that changed warfare. Dress uniforms had changed to camouflage, horses to tanks, and introduced the unconventional warfare of shelling and gas. The total number of military and civilian casualties in World War I was over 38 million. There were over 17 million deaths and 20 million wounded, making it one the deadliest wars in history. World War I was extremely brutal, especially with the warfare introduced. The setting of this war was immensely traumatizing to the civilians in the war zones and the soldiers fighting in them. This was emphasized all throughout All Quiet on the Western Front. In the novel, by Erich Maria Remarque, the …show more content…

He was “shell-shocked” or had “combat stress” at the time, as many soldiers leaving the front lines did. They were used to war and witnessed the horrors of war. They were not being themselves. This often happens today with veterans having PTSD and this can be seen in the novel in almost all the characters. Because of the shell-shock, many of the soldiers were not themselves. The war had strained the soldiers not only physically but mentally: “‘It will try simply to tell of a generation of men who, even though they have escaped its shells, were destroyed by the war.' This, without a heading, precedes the first chapter” (Advocate of Peace through Justice 142). The Advocate of Peace tells of the generation of men who had fought in this war and shown the stress of it even after. This shows how shell-shock was influencing these men after the war. The soldiers had become distant from people and things they loved before. On page 173, Paul says “I stand there dumb. As before a judge. Dejected. Words, Words, Words, - they do not reach me… Nevermore” (Remarque). He feels distant from the books he’s read and loved, along with the people he knew. He was a shell of his former …show more content…

There’s too much corned beef and white wheaten bread. Too many new guns. Too many aeroplanes. But we are emaciated and starved” (Remarque 280). The German line was breaking and supplies were lacking. The defeat was soon to come. The summer of 1918, the Germans on the front were losing morale, they were breaking to the English and Americans. They were dying of illness along with the wounds from explosions and bullets: “The months pass by. The summer of 1918 is the most bloody and most terrible… Still the campaign goes on - the dying goes on” (Remarque 284-285). The war continues, but the Germans slowly give in to the Allied forces, many of Paul’s friends die one by one. Morale continues to deplete, and in October 1918, Paul dies with only a month until Germany's inevitable defeat in November 1918. The Journal of Contemporary History writes: “The war is transformed from a cause into an inexorable, insatiable Moloch. The soldiers have no escape from the routinized slaughter; they are condemned men” (350). This quote summarizes the story of how the young men go from energetic friends on the front to the dead men walking after leaving this

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