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What do we learn about everyday life in the trenches in Act 1 in Journeys End?

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Introduction

What do we learn about everyday life in the trenches in Act 1 in 'Journeys End'? In this essay, I am going to outline what we learn about everyday life in the trenches in Act 1 in the play 'Journey's End' (R.C. Sherriff). During the play, R.C. Sherriff really shines an intense light on the trenches of World War 1 to show and highlight exactly what they were like and the sort of conditions that soldiers were living in. Part of the reason for this is that the general public did not know a lot about the war as communication systems were not as advanced back then as they are now, this leading to people having a slightly wrong impression of what happened, even though, it was one of the biggest events that have ever happened. The play is quite a good eye-opener and really gets people thinking about the atrocities of war, especially seen as it is a firsthand account from Sherriff himself. From what we are told, life in the trenches was at the very least dim, dull and disgusting. ...read more.

Middle

HARDY: Some sort of disinfectant, I suppose." "OSBORNE [pouring out a small whiskey and adding water]: Whiskey takes away the taste of water - RALEIGH: Oh, yes? [He pauses, and laughs nervously.] OSBORNE: - and the water takes away the taste of the whiskey." The fact that they had to go to these sort of extents just to get a drink was something, but over time they would get use to it. Sleeping, was quite an important part of the trenches, if they didn't have a good sleep then they would most likely not have a very good time on duty. The soldiers have to get use to the fact that the beds were not the best, the higher class soldiers would chose first so that they got the 'better' beds. The front line trenches themselves were a very tough place to live and so was only done so for six day, and then they would move further back from the front line in order to allow another group of soldiers to have their turn on the front line due to it being so intense. ...read more.

Conclusion

It was thought that young men that came straight from school were natural leaders. However it is sad to think that the average life of a young man on the front line is just three weeks. Overall, I think that we must believe R.C. Sherriff's account because he was there, he fought in the war and he saw it all. I believe that the title is perfect for the play, I think it really reflects over all the characters because it is the end to their journey whether they've been there for three years or three days, It also shows the real side of war because not everyone's a winner, and at that war, England lost, and a lot of people died. To sum up, life in the trenches was not at all easy, going on the front line with the fear of being shot along with the cramped and dingy dugouts and the low quality of food and drink. All of this must have been a surprise because the soldiers thought it would be a 'fun adventure' and that they would be back by Christmas, little did they know, they weren't coming back at all. ?? ?? ?? ?? Ryan Blake Randall English Literature - Ms Freshwater ...read more.

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