• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Compare and contrast the poems 'Anthem for Doomed Youth' by Wilfred Owen and 'The Soldier' by Rupert Brooke. What are the poets' attitudes towards war and how do they convey these attitudes?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Compare and contrast the poems 'Anthem for Doomed Youth' by Wilfred Owen and 'The Soldier' by Rupert Brooke. What are the poets' attitudes towards war and how do they convey these attitudes? Wilfred Owen's "Anthem for Doomed Youth" and Rupert Brooke's "The Soldier" express opposing views towards war and matters related to it. Owen condemns war as the cause of immense and painful loss of youths, killed like animals. He also attacks the church, generally held to preserve human life and dignity, implying it is powerless and irrelevant in a war situation. Brooke expresses ready acceptance (his view is meant to be the general view) of possible death on his country's behalf in grateful return to her for having "bore, shaped and made aware" him and enriching him spiritually. There is no reference to the horrors and pain of war. Apart from the poets' different attitudes towards war, there are many other differences such as tone, imagery and language. In 'The Soldier', Brooke's sense of indebtedness to his country completely blots out any sense of loss or regret over possible death on her behalf. Brooke doesn't even mention war in his poem. He is ready to give "back the thoughts by England given". He accepts death in war as a suitable repayment to his country for what England has done for him. ...read more.

Middle

The poem ends with a peaceful tone "In hearts at peace, under an English heaven" reflecting Brooke's contentment with England in every way. The images in Brooke's poem are those of the best things England has given him. In the first stanza "flowers", "ways to roam", "rivers", "blest", "suns of home" are tangible. These are appropriate because he is dealing with his physical make-up. In the second stanza, Brooke talks about the intangible things that England has given to him "sights and sounds", "dreams", "laughter" and "friends". These have developed him spiritually. He also refers to "gentleness", "peace" and "heaven" to suggest the richness of spirituality - recalling "richer dust" made by England. Such images imply the greatness of England and the tranquillity of the mind after death. The line "And think, this heart, all evil shed away" also gives the image of a good-natured soldier. This line suggests that if a person dies for England, all his immorality will be "shed"; death is a release from evil, leaving a pure spirit. Owen condemns the wastefulness of war in the poem 'Anthem for Doomed Youth'. In war, numerous youths "die as cattle" as though Youth itself is decimated like animals. Young people at home suffer deeply in losing them. ...read more.

Conclusion

Owen has created a forceful rhythm in the first stanza to express his intense emotion. This rapid rhythm is created by the alliterative words like "stuttering rifles' rapid rattle", the onomatopoeic words "monstrous anger" and the repeated sentence patterns "only the monstrous anger...only the stuttering rifles...no mockeries...no prayers nor bells, nor any voice". The sarcastic tone and brisk rhythm are in keeping with Owen's angry attack of war and the church. However, in the line "And bugles calling for them from sad shires", anger gives way to pain. This line bridges the battlefield with home where the loss is deeply and universally felt. This loss is in two regions: the chaotic battlefield and home where all is quiet. It is suffered by Youth and even nature as mentioned earlier. Owen uses sarcasm effectively in bitterly condensing the decimation of Youth, as in the title, and the utter failure of the church in preserving life and human dignity, as in references to the sounds of war replacing those at a church funeral. The prevalent feature of this poem is Owen's skill in his use of the sounds of words. The onomatopoeic "stuttering...orisons", and "monstrous...guns" evoke the deadly stutter of machine guns and thundering of cannons dominating the battlefield. The 'm' and 'n' sounds and long vowels convey the sense of heavy grief. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level War Poetry section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level War Poetry essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Wilfred Owen's Anthem for Doomed Youth and Siegfried Sassoon's Attack - Explore the ways ...

    4 star(s)

    and that people believed that they would feel pride dying for the country. Owen is trying to highlight that that is not the case; in fact they die en masse without a funeral or proper burial. The tone of the first stanza is angry, loud, and captures the sounds of war.

  2. Peer reviewed

    Compare: 'The Soldier' by Rupert Brooke, 'Futility' by Wilfred Owen, and 'Anthem For Doomed ...

    4 star(s)

    'Anthem For Doomed Youth' has a different beginning again. Although similar to 'Futility' in the fact that it does not condone war, it cannot be described as tender, as the words used are decidedly harsh. "...Only the monstrous anger of the guns.

  1. Compare and contrast "Disabled" by Wilfred Owen and "The Soldier" by Rupert Brooke.

    Furthermore it suggests that there is no glory in war. Verse three begins with the image of an artist who wanted to paint the soldier's face because it looked so young before he went to war, "There was an artist silly for his face".

  2. Compare "The Soldier" and "Anthem for Doomed Youth" under the criteria of purpose, ideas, ...

    Owen seems to have loved life more than England, whereas Brooke was very patriotic and viewed the whole nation as a personal life which is depicted here: 'If I should die...some corner of a foreign field forever England'. The soldier here is comparing his eventual death as to become part of the English soil.

  1. In The Soldier by Rupert Brooke we can see that it is very symbolic ...

    They help to create the effect that the weather has effected their state of mind. 'Is it that we are dying?' This is almost like an answer to the question 'What are we doing here?' from the second stanza. This poem is very pessimistic and shows a negative outlook on war.

  2. How do these pre twentieth century poets demonstrate different aspects of war, and convey ...

    " Why twas a very wicked thing! Said little Whilhelmine". When the grandfather tells them about the battle they say it is a wicked thing war is this is how Southey gets his views across. " The Charge of the Light brigade" by Alfred Lord Tennyson was written in 1854

  1. Examine the way two poems by Wilfred Owen show the real horrors of war.

    This is emotive language used by Owen to stress how dire and appalling the conditions of war were. No metaphors are used. Just what the soldiers themselves would experience. This makes the event seem more realistic almost as if one is there.

  2. War poetry - different poets attitudes to war.

    Many have lost their boots. But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind; Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind This poem also shows me that the old lie, 'Dulce et Decorum est Pro Patria mori,' really is a lie.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work