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Wilfred Owen`s War Poems.

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Wilfred Owen`s War Poems Wilfred Owen was born on 18th March 1893 in Oswestry, Britain. Wilfred Owen was a compassionate poet, his work provides the finest descriptions and critique of the soldier`s experiences during World War 1. He was killed in battle on 4th November 1918 in Ors, France, one week before the peace was declared. World War 1 "The Great War" also called "The war to end all wars" broke out in the year 1914 and ended in the year 1918. For many years afterwards its causes, and the conduct of all the participants were minutely picked-over, investigated and analysed. After, numerous books were written on all the War's aspects. Those soldiers who had fought in the trenches returned home and tried to resume normal lives - often by no means easy, especially for those who had been wounded, not only physically but also mentally by the horrors which they had experienced. Disabled shows the after effects of a soldier after this war ended. ...read more.


It explains the pain, the bad weather and bad condition of living (living in trenches) the soldiers have to go through to defend their country. Also this shows that to a soldier everything becomes their enemy in the war and their love for God is dying. Wilfred Owen Introduces the main themes as tragedy and horrifying things that no human being deserve to go through. Disabled: Starts with a man that lost parts of his body and also lost his future and hopes of being alive because of the fear of being rejected. Owen shows the pity and the waste of nostalgically looking back at the young man`s life because he was too young to join the up. He says,"Now he will never feel how slim girl`s waists are, or how warm their subtle hands. All of them touch him like some queer disease." (Stanza 2, line 6 + 7) Wilfred Owen tries to describe the soldier was able to touch and feel people but after he lost his arms and the only people that ...read more.


Wilfred Owen says " These are men whose minds the Dead have ravished. Memory fingers in their hair of munders, Multitudinous murders they once witnessed." (Stanza 2 lines 1+2) This paragraph shows how mentally weak a man becomes when they witness innocent young people being murdered, making them have that thought of guilt (trauma) for the rest of their life. Exposure: Shows that nature is also very dangerous and can kill anyone in both sides of this war, shows in this poem, enemies are not the only thing that is able to kill. Wilfred Owen expresses that the Wilfred Owen concludes the poems in a tragic way by saying the consequenses of war and how horrible war is. I really liked Mental Cases because it shows in more details how a war can make a person so misery and make them know how horrible being in a war is all about, seeing dead bodies and blood everywhere can make a person go metal and put them in their own world in the soldier`s head. ...read more.

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Response to the question

The answer given here is in response to Wilfred Owen's war poetry, namely 'Mental Cases', 'Disabled', and 'Exposure'. It is a fairly well-established response, with sufficient focus on the question enough to answer in a level of detail expected of ...

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Response to the question

The answer given here is in response to Wilfred Owen's war poetry, namely 'Mental Cases', 'Disabled', and 'Exposure'. It is a fairly well-established response, with sufficient focus on the question enough to answer in a level of detail expected of a low C grade candidate. A lot of what is said is very obvious, and is not written in very good English (e.g. short-hand has been used frequently; unnecessary underlining/itallicated words, etc.) so it would've been more promising to see the candidate, instead of trying to comment on everything to do with all three poems, tackle one objective at a time (e.g. - emotive/powerful language, then irony, then Second Person Address, etc.) and compare the extent to which these effects feature in the three poems. This would encourage a more active comparison between the poems and would be very explicitly answering the question. As it is, this candidate has simply listed facts and has failed to string them together into any sort of cohesive body of writing.

Level of analysis

The Level of Analysis is very shallow. The candidate only comment on the bare minimum to pass, although infrequent moments suggest that there is scope for deeper analysis such as the candidates commentary on 'Disabled' where they discuss the contextual factors that influenced the poem. I would like to have seen a more evenly-balanced analysis of the poems, with the same things analysed in each (as this would encourage comparison of poetic techniques), but the candidate misses important devices and techniques in poems like 'Mental Cases' (such as, it was originally called 'Purgatory Passions'; a contradictory element that resonated with a harrowing feel of the hellish supernatural) and also 'Exposure', whereby the most important element is the vulnerability and insignificance of the soldier's lives as they tried to hide from such ferocious weaponry. These must be considered as they are fundamental to the understanding of Owen's poetry. It is not simply enough to consider what happens in the poems (most of 'Exposure's analysis consists of this, with simplistic feature-spotting also gaining few or no marks); the candidate must dig deeper and show a sensitive appraisal of the poetic devices and techniques used to create the effect on the reader. Where this candidate lost the most marks is their lack of explicit commentary on how the poems effected them/readers in general. Reader effect is the key component in analysis, and this candidate lost easy marks for omitting it.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Written Communication (QWC) is poor. There is frequent use of short-hand, and improper use of bracketing and unnecessary underlining of the poems' titles. It is not considered the standard writing/typing practice to underline titles of published text - rather, they should be written in either italics or, more commonly, inverted commas, with all words in the title capitalised. To improve, take these notes on board and ensure that you re-read every paragraph after writing it for clarity of written expression. If you don't and have poor QWC, you run the risk of the examiner not understanding the intended meaning of your essay and knocking marks off for not being able to read what you're trying to say, even if it's good.

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Reviewed by sydneyhopcroft 14/03/2012

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