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Attitudes towards war as shown in the poetry that I have read and related to other readings.

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Introduction

Attitudes towards war as shown in the poetry that I have read and related to other readings. "If literature should not only indicate how mankind thinks, but also how mankind feels, then the poems of the First World War succeed on both counts." War poets represent the attitudes of the average British soldier who, although facing the same horrors, may clearly have had a different perspective of the conflict to that presented by some of the poets. Giving the phrase 'war poet,' some might see as someone who wrote poems during the war, however, I believe that it is someone that is expected to protest that war is exploitation - a war poet was expected to be a representative - he had to speak for the nation and steel its heart for battle. Through, the poetry of Owen and Rosenberg the war was dehumanising; it brought home how quickly and easily mankind could be reduced to a state lower than animals. By concentrating on these poets, especially in Owen's case, literate soldiers plunged into inhuman conditions, reacted to their surroundings in poems reflecting an overflow of powerful feelings. The main drift of Owen's verse is the shattering of the illusion of the glory of war. The suggestion is that the nation remains divided; one of who talks of war and ordains it, while the other acts and suffers. ...read more.

Middle

A point is made through the evocation of the war, about the war itself. Not one death is expressed in Owen's work, but in order to appreciate the exploitation, many deaths are expressed. Like Owen, Isaac Rosenberg characteristically uses the first person; his poetry is unexpected, whereby his poems exist through images, but never for them. Rosenberg manipulated events more than other poets in order to speak for the nation on the exploitation of the war itself. 'Break of Day in the Trenches' is one of Rosenberg's most famous poems and it explains in most detail the horror of the trenches during the war. Rosenberg was a poet and a soldier of the war, which makes his poetry more significant to study. The context of the time periods and dates when Rosenberg wrote this poem, when it was published, the actual events experienced, where Rosenberg wrote the poem and the importance of his life in connection with the poem and war are all factors that enable Rosenberg to display his feelings and attitudes about the war and its exploitation. Interpretations vary for this poem and consequently for any war poem, however there are areas that need to be understood in terms of the Great War itself and the time period. The meaning of 'the rat' is important throughout this poem and can also be a symbol of one of Rosenberg's influences in poetry itself. ...read more.

Conclusion

'Dulce et Decorum Est' is a poem full of visual objects that Owen describes very graphically, and it is these visual aids that helps the reader look at the poem in a far more intimate, empathetic way. The "thick green light", the "white eyes", and the "haunting flares", just some of the keywords that Owen uses to enable him to create the intense imagery that he achieves in this poem. In conclusion, after reading war poetry, anyone would understand the severity of being in the trenches during such a fearful, and horrible time; watching friends die and not being able to do anything about it. The soldiers that lay in the trenches during the war were doing so for their country, soldiers dying for those that didn't even know and it is through this poetry that the reality and exploitation of the war could be felt. This is what the war poets wanted to achieve; they wanted the public, those who felt that the war would be over in a few months, to realise that this was a war of great horror and despair. However, one of the only ways for the public to realise the extent of the war was through poetry and it was through successful poets like Owen and Rosenberg that a first-hand experience of this exploitation was felt, through their own attitudes and feelings of the war itself, whether they were in the trenches or at camp. ...read more.

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