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Analysis of conflict in Dulce et Decorum Est" and The Charge of the Light Brigade

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Introduction

English Literature-Poetry and Drama Look at the way conflict is presented in the section of verse you have studied The poem by Wilfred Owen ?Dulce et Decorum Est? was written by the poet after his first hand experience of the trenches during WWI, and gives us a small insight to what life in the trenches, during war, was actually like. It gives us a very negative horrific view of war, and is definitely a very anti-war poem. The poem ?The Charge of the Light Brigade? by Alfred Lord Tennyson however, is very pro-war with far more focus being put on the heroism and bravery of the men at war, rather than the death and horror of war, and as a result, gives us an almost romantic view of war. ?The soldier? by Rupert Brooke also gives us a similar take on war, but focuses more on the patriotism of the men at war, and even of those at home. In this essay I am going to look at how the three poets present the theme of conflict in their poems. The poem by Owen can rather easily be divided into three sections: a description of soldiers leaving the battlefield, a mustard gas attack and a challenge thrown out to those who glorify war. ...read more.

Middle

However once again in Tennyson?s Poem, instead of focusing explicitly on the deaths of the men, he gives us a very vague and distant view of what is happening to the men, with only brief detail being put into the deaths of the soldiers; ?All that was left of them, left of the six hundred?, and as a result, once again, makes the deaths less serious, and dispels more negative views towards war. The final section of the poem by Owen, is written in direct address to the reader who he refers to as "My friend", giving us a more direct and closer feel to the poem, once again focussing on the seriousness of it all. The first line of this stanza is presented in the future tense; perhaps Owen, although hopeful, realizes that the intended receiver of the poem will never dream of this terrible scene. Owen's only hope is that the powerful but ugly imagery in this section of the poem will allow them a vivid insight into the horrors of trench warfare, and the use of his language such as ?the vile incurable sores? and ?froth corrupted lungs? is indeed very reflective of the images associated with trench warfare and war in general, all being very negative, and very, very horrific. ...read more.

Conclusion

Tennyson?s poem on the contrary gives us a very optimistic, almost romantic view of conflict, presenting the deaths of the men, although brutal and tragic, makes them out to be noble and heroic because their blood was shed in the name of their country, which is also the view shared by Brooke in ?the soldier?, seen as the death was in the name of the country, although tragic, is worth, noble, and almost right even. I personally think this is stupid notion and a life lost at war, is a life wasted, no matter what the reason or how heroically the person died, because in my opinion, war is pointless and achieves nothing other than wasting vast quantities of money and vast numbers of lives. The poems I have studied have given me much insight to what war was like, and the horrific effects it can have on people, but also of how patriotic as a nation at war we were, and how this affected the people during the war, both at home and fighting. Overall I cannot exactly say that I am a fan of the poetry, maybe perhaps due to the subject matter of the poems being to serious, but it has shown me how one event can be viewed by different people in many different ways, and then as a result be presented to the rest of the world differently . ...read more.

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