All Quiet on the West Front Essay

Topics: All Quiet on the Western Front, Generation, Generation Y Pages: 3 (1006 words) Published: April 14, 2013
Analyse how a main character OR individual matures and takes action in a text you have studied.

In the novel ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ by Erich Maria Remarque, an important character that matures through-out the text is Paul Baumer. By realizing the realities of war, being apart of a lost generation and showing the reflection of friendship makes this character a person who has develops and matures in the following novel.

By realizing the brutalities of modern warfare allows this character to transform from a “naïve school boy oblivious to the world outside his textbooks” to a “hardened solider just trying to live another day”. In order for the character to survive a harsh war, Paul must convert his school boy self into an animalistic person. This is shown as they “set out as soldiers-” and “reach the zone where the front line begins turning into human animals” in order to survive. The experience of battle is quite animalistic in this way, as the soldiers trust their senses over their thoughts and sniff out safety wherever they can find it. This motif of animal instinct contributes to the larger theme that war destroys the humanity of the soldier, stripping away his abilities. These include how Paul and other soliders are unable to feel acting out as beast rather than a men. By joining the combat, this shows the readers that Paul and his generation were apart of “the lost generation that was destroyed-even those who survived the shelling”. By learning how to kill and survive while under attack instead of pursuing passions of learning, and travelling the world shows how this generation was just simply robbed of all hopes and dreams for life after the war. This is relevant to me as it shows the difficulties and struggles many comrades had to face during and especially after the war had finished, making you appreciated living life to the fullest before a barrier strips you and holds you back like these men in this novel.

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