Betrayal In All Quiet On The Western Front

736 Words3 Pages
The aftermath of the horrifying and traumatic events of World War 1, brought a dramatic rise in of pacifist and anti-war literature, including the impactful novel All Quiet on the Western Front, composed by Erich Maria Remarque. Remarque’s personal experiences fighting in the futile battles of World War 1 drove him to portray a realistic perspective of war and serve a voice for the Lost Generation through his novel and make deliberate decisions to portray the betrayal of the older generation forcing innocent boys to engage in atrocities, the immense fear and sadness when losing a comrade, and the major physiological impacts soldiers endure, in order to influence audiences towards pacifism and away from romanticizing war. Born 1898 in Osterburg,…show more content…
Expressing this strong feeling of betrayal through the character of Paul, Remarque strove to avenge the futile deaths of many in his generation by revealing the figures which persuaded them to engage in war and present audiences with insight into the true unglamourous nature of war. Additionally, during Remarque’s traumatic experiences fighting on the western front, he was strongly affected by the loss of a close comrade, who he rescued by carrying out of a fire only to witness his death, a situation eerily similar to the death of beloved anti-hero Kat, which had a profound negative impact on Paul Baumer. In the novel, in the midst of futile violence Paul’s fatherly figure and comrade Kat is shot in the shin and while desperately carrying him to receive medical attention, a fatal wound to his skull goes unnoticed by Paul. Remorse and emptiness overcomes Paul, even as orderlies are mystified by the strong emotion he could feel towards a comrade Paul contemplates in his mind, “Do I walk? Have I feet…show more content…
The extreme sadness faced by Remarque, inspired him to communicate to readers the strong brother-like bond between comrades, and the empty, hopeless feelings which accompany a death of a comrade which soldiers are supposed to simply except rather than grieve. Finally, the intentional actions of Remarque when composing the conclusion to his novel strongly portray his overall goal of communicating to his audience, that there are no true survivors of an atrocities such as World War 1, the severe psychological impacts on every soldier, including himself, are crushing and the weight of war was too much to bare by a young
Open Document