Dulce Et Decorum Est - Critical Response

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  • Topic: Rhyme, Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori, Poetry
  • Pages : 3 (1149 words )
  • Download(s) : 756
  • Published : October 8, 1999
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A poem which I have recently read is: "Dulce Et Decorum Est" by Wilfred Owen. The main point Wilfred Owen tries to convey in this poem is the sheer horror of war. Owen uses many techniques to show his feelings, some of which I'll be exploring.

Wilfred Owen is a tired soldier on the front line during World War I. In the first stanza of Dulce Et Decorum Est he describes the men and the condition they are in and through his language shows that the soldiers deplore the conditions. Owen then moves on to tell us how even in their weak human state the soldiers march on, until the enemy fire gas shells at them. This sudden situation causes the soldiers to hurriedly put their gas masks on, but one soldier did not put it on in time. Owen tells us the condition the soldier is in, and how, even in the time to come he could not forget the images that it left him with. In the last stanza he tells the readers that if we had seen what he had seen then we would never encourage the next generation to fight in a war.

Owen uses imagery constantly to convey the conditions and feelings experienced during this war. Firstly I will be exploring Metaphor as it is used so much in this poem. The first metaphor which I will examine is: "Haunting Flares" on line 3 of the first stanza. This quote has so many connotations, my first opinion on this was that the flares which the enemy are firing to light up the battle field are said to be representing the souls of the soldiers fallen comrades. This could also be said to represent the power the enemy has on their own mortality as the bright flares would light up the battle-field exposing everything to their view, this indicates that the enemy always seem to have power upon the soldiers, almost godly. The second metaphor which I will explore is: "An ecstasy of fumbling" on line one of the second stanza. This metaphor is significant as it describes the quick manner in which the soldiers will have been trying to put their...
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