• 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)

    It puts across the devastation of the war and the brutal reality of the trenches. It uses lots of hard, jarring words like 'rapid', 'rattle', 'stuttering', and 'shrill'. Both of the stanzas start with a rhetorical question. The second stanza, however, is more concentrated on the home front.

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

    "And each slow dusk a drawing down of blinds". 'Slow' obviously portrays the impatient need for something to happen as deadlock between both sides was caused during 1917 in the Great War. Probably, Owen wanted to desperately die or return home, which is indicated in his tone.

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

    The final poem is Dolce Et Decorum Est (It is sweet and meek to die for one's country). It is also by Wilfred Owen. The first stanza of the poem refers to the soldiers as 'old beggars under sacks' and makes the reader picture soldiers as frail and helpless beggars underneath sacks.

  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 and contrast the ways in which Wilfred Owen and Ted Hughes write about ...

    However this image is effective as we can associate the colour black with traditional ideas of evil and suffering as opposed to the associations of purity and innocence connected with white. Natural forces continue to attack in the next stanza: Dawn massing in the east her melancholy army Attacks once

  1. War poetry - different poets attitudes to war.

    also makes me feel that if you don't go to war that the soldiers that have already died will have died for nothing, the part of the poem that makes me feel like this is:- Take up our quarrel with the foe To you from falling hands we throw The

  2. Compare 2 war poems demonstrating an awareness of the poets' attitudes towards war.

    In "War Photographer", Carol Ann Duffy writes about the photographer, saying "he". She uses the present sense but is not directly addressing the reader. In "Dulce et Decorum Est" however, the poem is started as if the reader is actually there, marching beside the poet, experiencing the horrors.

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