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

Analysis of "Exposure" by Wilfred Owen

Extracts from this document...


?Exposure? is a poem written by a World War I poet Wilfred Owen. The title is a summary of how soldiers are mentally stripped of human dignity because they are exposed to the elements of war. Owen uses a range of techniques and uses specific language to describe the horrific conditions these soldiers were fighting. Owen uses a chronological structure in this poem to reflect one whole day of life in the trenches. The poem starts in the night when the soldiers ?keep awake because the night is silent? and then runs into dawn as ?the poignant misery begins to grow? which then leads to day and then returns back to night, at the burial. This indicates how dawn has been used to represent death and a lack of home, which is in contrast to the real meaning of dawn being full of hope and new beginnings. ...read more.


Moreover, repetition has been used several times to emphasis the mental torment of the weather, as well as adding more power to the poem. Four of the eight stanzas end with ?But nothing happens.? This highlights how boredom took over them and whilst being bored, feelings of fear and terror creep in on them. Similarly, Owen uses metaphors to describe the soldier?s thoughts and memories of home. This is illustrated as ?slowly? their ?ghosts drag home? however, they soon remember that all ?the doors are closed? and return ?back to our dying.? This displays how the soldiers are reluctant to think about these good memories because then it just reminds them of home which provides security and the misery in the front line which offers nothing for them. ...read more.


Suddenly, the men hear ?successive flights of bullets? which ?streaked the silence? however they describe it to be ?less deadly than the air?black with snow.? The repeated -s sounds in this line echoes the sound of bullets and transports the reader to the harsh reality of war, but then we are told that it?s ?less deathly? in comparison to the weather. Furthermore, snow is usually white which is associated with purity and cleanliness, however, nothing about this situation is pure, so the snow is described as black, which shows how even nature has changed. Wilfred Owen uses a particular structure to explain the daily routine of men fighting as well as using a range of metaphors to help the reader visualise this haunting sight. It seems the men aren?t being killed by the war, but by ?exposure? to the cold. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Wilfred Owen 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 GCSE Wilfred Owen essays

  1. How does Owen use language to explore the harsh realities of war in Exposure?

    This technique is used by Owen in the first line of the fourth stanza where the fast-paced sibilance of "Sudden successive flights of bullets streak" is juxtaposed with the word "silence" in the same line.

  2. Wilfred Owens World War poetry Dulce et Decurum est and Mental Cases

    They live every day filled with, 'stroke on stroke of pain'. This quote is suggestive of a punishment and torment they are receiving. Additionally, this is backed up when the poet writes that they are 'sleeping, and walk hell'. There condition is shown to pain them continuously in this line,

  1. Trace the history of 'the old lie with particular reference to the poetry of ...

    of duty, a repayment for the nurture that the country has given. He adds to this idea by using soft sounds throughout the poem. Despite the fact that the First World War consisted of thousands of horrific, disgusting deaths upon the battlefield, the poem is still written with serenity.

  2. Contrasts between 'Exposure' and 'Breakfast'.

    Additionally the soldiers also can't get to sleep at nights, not only from the cold but also from the silence. This a dramatic piece of irony in the poem because usually people can only go to sleep when it's

  1. Wilfred Owen - "The old Lie"

    For example, "A dust whom England bore" and "A body of England's, breathing English air" are but to name a few references of England in this poem. Brooke was quite prepared to die for his country, we know this from the line, "In that rich earth a richer dust concealed",

  2. An Analysis of "Exposure" by Wilfred Owen

    war?, suggesting that these men are feeling detached from the war and life itself, either due to shock or loss. It is easier for us readers to comprehend the soldier?s extreme emotional states through Owen?s use of similes. Repetition is another of Owen?s effective techniques.

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