Compare the Perception of World War One in ‘the Accrington Pals’ to the Reality of World War One in ‘Journey's End’

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Compare the perception of World War One in ‘The Accrington Pals’ to the reality of World War One in ‘Journey’s End’ In ‘The Accrington Pals’ the women at home can only rely on the media to base their views on about World War One, however the audience in ‘Journey’s End’ see the harsh realities of what the Officers had to face in their day to day life. Although there are also areas in ‘Journey’s End’, where the Officers perceive information about World War One without any direct knowledge. In ‘The Accrington Pals’, we learn that it is set in Autumn 1914 which was when World War One started and Tom has volunteered to go to the war, for which he’s excited to enlist but he doesn’t actually know how it’s going to be like and as the audience watch the play they start to see his adolescence and youthfulness through his and May’s relationship where there is also stubbornness which forces them apart. I think that if May and Tom were more honest with one another from the beginning then they would have appreciated the time they could have spent together. May goes to the recruiting office where she meets Sergeant Major Rivers, and tries to appeal for Tom’s release and tries to persuade him by telling him “He’s too easily swayed. He lets others talk him into this.” Although the only way Tom perceives the war is by hearing and reading through the propaganda, media and officers which don’t actually portray the truth of the horrors because this would decrease the recruitment of the soldiers. However in ‘Journey’s End’ which is set in 1917, it shows a young naïve man named Raleigh who is like Tom but goes into war with the knowledge that the war has been fought for the last three years, whereas in ‘The Accrington Pals’ the soldiers were told that World War One would be over by Christmas but in reality it was a lie. Raleigh goes straight into the trenches and witnesses the realities of how the soldiers lived and their conditions, especially when Trotter helps Raleigh: “Just wear your belt with revolver case on it. Must have your revolver to shoots rats.” But in ‘The Accrington Pals’, it took Tom two years before he saw any action or went to the frontline because he joined in 1914 and his first time at the front was in The Battle of Somme in 1916. In ‘Journey’s End’ the men in the trenches face the realities of the war and experience the emotions of being frightened and coping with everything. But in reality if the soldiers wanted to tell the truth to the people back home on how they really felt, they would have to sugar-coat it because all of the soldiers’ letters that were collected everyday were censored and if a soldier had written down how they really felt they would be punished, the letters would be covered up and if the letters had reached home, it would cause distress to the people and make them question what is actually taking place. In ‘Journey’s End’, Act Two, Scene One Commanding Officer Stanhope confiscates a letter home from Raleigh insisting on his right to censor it and screams at him “D’you understand an order? Give me that letter!” because of his status and how he doesn’t want his girlfriend to know of his growing alcoholism because that’s the only way he can cope in the war. But if Stanhope or the other Commanding Officers wanted to send their letters, then they didn’t need to be censored because of their respective status. In spite of this in ‘The Accrington Pals’ the women at home don’t actually know what is honestly going on in the war, they perceive the information through the media, newspapers, which weren’t a reliable source because they would only print what the Government has allowed and controlled them to know. Act Two, Scene Five shows the women anxiously waiting for the news of ‘The Pals’ but when they read the Newspaper it says “More detailed information will be available in the next few days…” it doesn’t mention anything about them. Even though there’s more reality of war in ‘Journey’s End’, there is...
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