Compare the Different Views of War in the Poems ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ by Wilfred Owen and ‘the Man He Killed’ by Thomas Hardy

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  • Topic: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori, Poetry, World War II
  • Pages : 2 (965 words )
  • Download(s) : 462
  • Published : September 16, 2010
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In this essay I will be comparing the two poems, ‘The Man He Killed’ by Thomas Hardy and ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ by Wilfred Owen. ‘The Man He Killed’ is about a man who was in the war and is thinking about his memories in the war. The main part of his experience in the war that he is reminiscing is the killing that he committed and the majority of the poem is focused on that. Thomas Hardy did not go to war himself but it could be thought that he got the idea from a friends experience in the war. The poem is based on the Boer War. The message of the poem is that he was most probably very similar to the man he killed, as in not really knowing what they’re fighting for and why they’re there. ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ is about someone who is telling of his memory of watching a fellow soldier choke to death in a gas attack. The majority of the poem is of the person describing the moment of seeing his comrade choke in vast detail. The poem was written by Wilfred Owen, who fought in the war and it may be possible that this poem is a first hand experience. It is thought that the poem is set in World War I. The whole phrase is actually ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Patria Mori which is Latin. It translates into: ‘It is sweet and honourable to do for your country. Even though both poets show that they do not agree with war, they both express their point of views in different ways. Wilfred Owen actually fought in the war, so his poem is a lot more detailed, whereas Thomas Hardy did not go to war, so his poem goes into much less detail, maybe signifying his inexperience in war. While reading ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ you get the feeling that the words are very heartfelt and the excessive detail suggests to you that Wilfred Owen did experience this himself, which makes the poem all the more meaningful. On the other hand, ‘The Man He Killed’ is a somewhat calmer poem – but still delivering the same idea that war is wrong. This idea may not come across as strongly as ‘Dulce Et Decorum...
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