Wilfred Owen was born in 1893 and became known as one of the most outstanding poets of the 1st world war. He himself fought on the front line during the war and witnessed first hand the extreme situations and terrible conditions soldiers experienced. Owen felt that war was pointless causing nothing but pain and suffering and this is shown in many of his poems. Both poems ‘Exposure’ and ‘Spring Offensive’ show the extreme situations and inhuman misery that soldiers went through.
In the poem ‘Exposure’ one of the main ways that Owen shows the awful, extreme situation the soldiers are in is by using strong, powerful imagery of nature and weather. The poem itself is about the awful situation the soldiers face who are out on the front line under freezing weather conditions. In the title alone ‘Exposure’ Owen is referring not only to the men being out at war but also to the way they are being exposed to the elements of nature as they are stuck all day in the trenches. Right at the beginning of the poem Owen uses powerful personification with imagery to leave the reader in no doubt of the awful situation the soldiers find themselves up against ‘merciless iced east winds that knive us’, he talks of the wind being like living force against the soldiers ready to knife them. The wind is as sharp as any knife going through them. Personification is used throughout when referring to the weather condition, in the second stanza personification is used ‘mad gusts tugging on the wire’ showing that powerful winds are fighting against the men. The soldiers not only have the opposition to fight but their situation has become extreme as nature as also turned against them. In the fifth stanza Owen gives life to the snow, ‘Pale flakes with fingering’ which reach out for the soldiers faces until they become ‘snow-dazed’, hypnotised by the snowy conditions. In... [continues]
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(2011, 10). Compare the Ways in Which Owen Portrays the Extreme Situations Which the Soldiers Experience in Exposure and Spring Offensive. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 10, 2011, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Compare-The-Ways-In-Which-Owen-801642.html
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"Compare the Ways in Which Owen Portrays the Extreme Situations Which the Soldiers Experience in Exposure and Spring Offensive." StudyMode.com. 10, 2011. Accessed 10, 2011. http://www.studymode.com/essays/Compare-The-Ways-In-Which-Owen-801642.html.