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How is War Presented in "The Charge Of the Light Brigade" and "Dulce Et Decorum Est"?

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Introduction

How is War Presented in "The Charge Of the Light Brigade" and "Dulce Et Decorum Est"? Alfred Lord Tennyson and Wilfred Owen present war in completely different ways in The Charge Of the Light Brigade and Dulce Et Decorum Est. One main difference that stands out to the reader is that Dulce Et Decorum Est just focuses on one single soldier, which reaches the reader on a more personal level. This brings the reader more 'into' the poem and they can really feel the emotion portrayed in the poem. Rather than focussing on just one soldier, Tennyson refers to the Army - "The six hundred." This brings across a much more powerful feeling, and the reader doesn't feel the emotion of each and every soldier therefore a more positive outlook is taken upon the war in The Charge Of the Light Brigade. In contrast to the positive atmosphere created in The Charge Of the Light Brigade, Wilfred Owen takes a very negative outlook on the war, and this is shown in Dulce Et Decorum Est by the emotive language used: "Limped on, blood-shod." ...read more.

Middle

From this we can see that Wilfred Owen is using "Beggars" as a way of describing the soldiers. This is an insult to the soldiers, as it is saying that they are not socially dignified, they are not worth anything. Alfred Lord Tennyson uses rhyme consistently throughout The Charge Of the Light Brigade. For example, "Brigade, Dismay'd", "Why, Die." This brings across a sense of order, and suggests organisation of the troops. Also, in The Charge Of the Light Brigade the stanzas are of a similar, consistent length, which suggests a powerful, organised atmosphere. In comparison to Tennyson, Owen does not use similarly lengthed stanzas. The first and second stanzas are relatively long, and then come a short, sharp dramatic sentence, followed by another long paragraph. The short paragraph in the middle really stands out to the reader: "In all my dreams before my helpless sight, He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning." Because of the powerful, emotive language used, and the fact that it is isolated from the rest of the poem, this sentence really draws attention from the reader. ...read more.

Conclusion

Unlike in The Charge Of the Light Brigade, Owen uses "You" in Dulce Et Decorum Est which makes it more direct and personal and brings the reader 'into' the poem. Alfred Lord Tennyson uses repetition throughout The Charge Of the Light Brigade: "Half a league, half a league, half a league onward." This emphasises the fact that Tennyson is stressing that the soldiers have to keep on going "onward." Instead of using repetition, Wilfred Owen uses alliteration; "Watch the white eyes writhing," and onomatopoeia: "deaf to even the hoots." In conclusion, I think that the main difference in the way that war is presented in The Charge Of the Light Brigade and Dulce Et Decorum Est is that Wilfred Owen was involved in war, and therefore he knows first-hand what war is like, and is writing from experience. In comparison to Wilfred Owen's attitude, Alfred Lord Tennyson writes his poem with a positive point of view, as he has not been involved in war and therefore has not experienced first-hand what the soldiers have to go through. ...read more.

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