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War Poetry Assignment on different attitudes of poets’ to War

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War Poetry Assignment on different attitudes of poets' to War Since the dawn of time to present day, man has evolved physically and mental and with him, his attitude to issues that affect our developing world. So, it is not a surprise that poets' have expressed their attitudes to world issues such as war and I will trace the development of their attitudes from the 19th Century onwards. I have decided to trace the attitudes of two poems, 'The Charge of the Light Brigade' which is by Lord Alfred Tennyson, written in the 19th Century and 'Dulce et Decorum est' which is by Wilfred Own, written in the 20th Century. Although both 'Dulce et Decorum Est� and 'The Charge of the Light Brigade� are about battle and the death of soldiers, they portray the experience of war in different ways. Tennyson's poem was written in the 19th Century and he had a different attitude and view towards war than Wilfred Owen. Tennyson wrote 'The Charge of the Light Brigade� in a few minutes after reading the description in The Times of the Battle of Balaclava in 1854. He was a civilian poet, as opposed to a soldier poet like Owen. His poem 'Charge of the Light Brigade' increased the morale of the British soldiers fighting in the Crimean War and of the people at home, but Tennyson had not been an eyewitness to the battle he describes. ...read more.


This poem uses lots of descriptions that allow the reader to see the battle as the soldier saw it. No matter where you looked, all that could be seen was certain death. No safety could be found. After being taken into the psyche of the brigade and seeing a vivid picture of the valiant charge the reader cannot hope to do anything but admire the valour of the soldiers and "Honour the Light Brigade." However, Wilfred Owen wrote 'Dulce et Decorum est' towards the end of the First World War. He was killed in action a week before the war ended in 1918. He wanted to end the glorification of war. Owen was against the propaganda and lies that were being told at the time. He had first-hand experience of war and wanted to tell people back at home the truth. Owen was an officer and often had to send men to their deaths and 'Dulce et Decorum est' gives a personal account of what the war was like. Many patriotic poems had been written at the time. Owen knew that they lied. 'Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Patri Moria' translated in to English means It Is Sweet and Honorable to Die for Ones Country. If someone is reading the poem for the first time and learns of the English meaning of the title before reading the poem they may feel it is a poem that represents the army in a good way. ...read more.


Wilfred Owen knew that war was being glamorized and he wanted to warn people not to go to war. Owen leaves the reader feeling disgusted at what war is capable of. This poem is extremely effective as an anti-war poem, making war seem absolutely horrid and revolting, just as the author wanted it to. Owens main question to the reader in the last stanza is before going into the army think carefully of what you are doing as you might get and see something in great contrast to what you may have imagined. This poem is the closest we will get to experience war and if we had, Owen tells us in the final lines, and then we would not try to glorify the war any more. In the Preface to his poems, published after his death, Owen wrote, 'All a poet can do today is warning. That is why true poets must be truthful�. This is why Owen criticizes 'the high zest� that some people have for 'the old Lie� of the glory of war. In conclusion, Tennyson has a much glamorized attitude to war, a very unrealistic view in my opinion but as the centuries change and people change, opinions change and Owen is not afraid to tell the horror of war and the effect it has on innocent human beings and that war is pointless. Maybe today's society could learn from Wilfred Owen. ?? ?? ?? ?? Jonny Goodfellow 12M Mrs Press ...read more.

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