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Compare and Contrast the attitudes to war in Tennyson(TM)s Charge of the Light Brigade(TM) and Owen(TM)s Dulce et Decorum est(TM)

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Compare and Contrast the attitudes to war in Tennyson's 'Charge of the Light Brigade' and Owen's 'Dulce et Decorum est' The two poems have some similarities and several differences including style, structure, language and attitudes to war. The two poems are from different time periods. Lord Tennyson's 'Charge of the Light Brigade' is from the Crimean war in 1854, which was between the English and the Russians. Whereas Wilfred Owen's 'Dulce et Decorum est' is from WW1, in 1917, which was between the English and the Germans. Another main difference is that Tennyson did not fight in the war he only read about it in a newspaper, so his view was an idealistic one. In contrast with Owen who fought in WW1 so, he had a realistic view of war. There are several similarities in the poems. One of the main ones is that both of the poems are about war. In addition, a mistake occurred in both poems. For example in 'The Charge' 'someone had blundered' shows us that someone had made a mistake in sending the soldiers to war but Tennyson did not want to concentrate on who was to blame but how brave the soldiers were. In a similar manner in 'Dulce' when there had been a gas attack one of the soldiers did not have a gas mask. 'Someone still was yelling out and stumbling' shows either he lost it or he was not given one. ...read more.


' 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 is Latin for ' it is sweet and right to die for your country' and he clearly states his opinion by saying that the Latin proverb is a lie and it is so outdated that it is no longer true. Whereas in 'The Charge' Tennyson thinks war is harsh and difficult but believes that it brings out the best in the soldiers and that they should be honoured for what they did. He presents war as glorious because he had an idealistic view of war. The poem is exciting and dramatic and the soldiers are described as noble and honourable. 'Boldly they rode and well' shows us that the soldiers are brave. 'Flashed all their sabres bare' is very exciting because the soldiers are being active and are fighting in what they believe in unlike Tennyson who is very distant from the war. We still have sympathy for the soldiers 'someone had blundered' tells us that someone made a mistake but the soldiers had to carry on and loose their lives anyway. The use of Imagery in the poems is also quite different. In 'The Charge' Tennyson uses metaphors to describe the doomed atmosphere for the 600 soldiers for example ' into the valley of death' ' into the jaws of death' and ' into the mouth of hell. ...read more.


The rhythm in ' The Charge' could be perceived as the horses galloping. However the rhythm in 'Dulce' is completely different. When the rhythm breaks down it adds more excitement 'Gas! Gas! Quick boys' shows the rhythm change in the poem. Another example is when the message is given the rhythm of this is again completely different to that in the rest of the poem. This again adds more excitement and emphasis. In conclusion, there are several similarities and many differences between the two poems. The main similarity is that both poems are about war and a mistake made during it. The most important difference between the two poems is the poet's attitude to war. Tennyson thinks war is harsh and difficult but he thinks it brings out the best in the soldiers this makes them noble and therefore should be honoured he thinks this because he did not fight in the war so his view is an idealistic one. Whereas Owen thinks war is a destructive and pointless thing because he fought in the war and knew exactly how hard it was. People's attitudes to war changed after WW1 as everybody knew or lost someone in the war. Owens poem may have helped people change their views on war from thinking it was glorious like Tennyson to destructive like Owen's .In my opinion 'Dulce' is the most effective because of this. I also think that Owen shows his opinion in a clearer way through his message at the end. The use of 'my friend' includes the reader and makes the poem seem more personal. Stephanie Meachen 10DST English 10.2W (1914 words) - 1 - ...read more.

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