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

How do the poems ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ and ‘The last Laugh’ reflect the attitude of the poet towards the subject of war?

Extracts from this document...


How do the poems 'Dulce et Decorum Est' and 'The last Laugh' reflect the attitude of the poet towards the subject of war? Dulce et Decorum Est and The Last Laugh were written by Wilfred Owen. Wilfred Owen was a soldier during World War 1. He fought on the frontline in Europe for the United Kingdom. He wrote the poems about some of the awful things he had witnessed on the front line. As a soldier he witnessed his fellow soldiers dying in some truly awful ways. During the war your fellow soldiers were like family because you grew really close as you had to rely on each other. World War 1 was a very bloody war with millions of people from all over the world losing their lives for a stupid cause. Wilfred Owen himself was actually killed during the war. In 'Dulce et Decorum est' he tells the reader of the poem in the first stanza about what it was like for the soldiers who lived constantly on the frontline. ...read more.


I could imagine that seeing something like that happening to someone you know scares you to death. The next stanza is effective to the reader also as Owen addresses the reader, saying what it would be like for them to be in the war and cart off someone you care about. He describes the awful things that happened to the soldier. At the end of the stanza Owen addresses the reader again and says, 'My friend, you would not tell with such high zest To children ardent for some desperate glory, The old lie: Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori.' This translates into 'How sweet it is to die for one's country. So in this poem Owens attitude to the war is a negative one. In The Last Laugh, Owen tells of the many ways in which soldiers died during the war and what they said as they were dying. Throughout the poem He uses personification to describe the sounds that the weapons make as they are being fired or being exploded. ...read more.


The gas is described as hissing. Owen makes the gas sound deadly as if it is a poisonous snake. Owen also describes the death of another soldier. This time though the soldier calls out for his love. As he is doing this his face slowly sinks into the mud. Owens opinion of the war through this poem is again a negative one. In conclusion the poets of the First World War do not know what they are talking about. Wilfred Owen on the other hand does know what he is talking g about because he was in the war and he experienced the brutal horror of what for the soldiers was normal everyday life. Unfortunately Owen was killed himself just a few weeks before the war ended, so what he did write was actually happening to him whilst he was in the trenches. Owen tells it like it is, that war is brutal and how sweet it is not to die for ones country. Jessie Pope wrote World War 1 poetry but she knew nothing about what it was like to actually be there. Jessie Pope's poetry encouraged young people to go to fight and die for Britain. All it was, was just propaganda. ?? ?? ?? ?? Chris Dunn SHK 30/04/07 ...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

    Compare and contrast attitudes to war illustrated in Jessie Pope’s ‘Who’s for the game?’ ...

    3 star(s)

    And who thinks he'd rather sit tight?" In these verses she glorifies the men who fight in the war while she infers that those who do not, are cowards. This is a very insinuating way to put pressure on men who aren't fighting in the war. Once again she bears reference to a game by using the phrase 'grip and tackle'.

  2. A Comparison between ‘The Kiss’, ‘Glory of Women’ by Siegfried Sassoon and ‘Dulce et ...

    Recruiting officers would use this slogan to convince soldiers to fight and join, these were untrained soldiers, the army. The poem describes what soldiers go through and experience. This point of view was all from Wilfred Owens point (it is describing what he had been through), which he had hated and from that was traumatised.

  1. Compare three war poems demonstrating awareness of the poet's attitude towards war.

    He feels a pang of sadness as the realisation of the enemy's previous life hits him. This feelings Douglas has humanised the dead enemy and he realises that he and the enemy are not as dissimilar as he had originally thought and it could quite easily be him dead on the floor.

  2. Examine a selection of poetry by the war poets. What do you learn of ...

    "... valley of Death" This metaphor found in lines 3 and 7 adds to the already heightened imagery and exonerates the extreme bravery of the cavalry, they knew they were heading into the "valley of death" yet they continued. "'Forward, the Light Brigade!

  1. "Dulce et decorum est" is a poem written by the poet Wilfred Owen during ...

    It is as if they are making an effort to turn their backs on the horror. Line four tells of the men, "trudging to their distant rest" It must seem like an eternity before the soldiers can finally relax. However the line can be interpreted in different ways.

  2. From your reading of Dulce et decorum est and the sentry, what do you ...

    Using the word 'cursed' the image created of the soldiers is unhappy and very exhausted. Owen uses these words to tell us that they are demoralised, feeling old and very unfit. The poet is really trying to highlight how the soldiers are feeling.

  1. Alexander Pope’s ‘The Rape of the Lock’

    Pope portrays these beings as the guardians of women: 'Our humbler province is to tend the fair'vi Obsessed with the beauty, grace and chastity of their charges, the sylphs perform an allegorical function, representing the conventions of the Augustan society.

  2. Compare and Contrast ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ and ‘Joining the Colours’. Which poem is ...

    This is from 'Dulce' and it was a recurring nightmare and an image not easily forgotten. The memories of war never go away. 'They pipe their way to glory and the grave.' The soldiers are still young and they are cheering themselves on to what they think will be glory but for some will be the death of them.

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