Unknown Soldier

Topics: World War I, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Australia Pages: 7 (2532 words) Published: July 30, 2012
How is the Australian Unknown Soldier significant? What makes him significant? The Unknown Soldier represents a part of Australia’s history and also represents the ANZAC soldiers that fought in World War One. He holds all the values and qualities that the ANZACs were said to evident in their everyday lifestyle. He is an iconic symbol for Australia and its military history as well a representative of commemorating the sacrifices the soldiers made for their country. The ANZAC legend was written to describe the way ANZAC soldiers conducted themselves on and off the battlefield. Their behaviour written by the First Australian War Correspondent Charles Bean was written with positive language resulting in the creation of the ANZAC legend where the ANZAC soldiers were seen to be invincible. “The men… have to stay there while shell after huge shell descends with a shriek close beside them- each one an acute mental torture…” The Unknown Soldier represents how the ANZAC soldiers conducted themselves on the battlefield and is a reminder to the Australian public what the soldiers sacrificed. The qualities and values lived by the ANZAC soldiers will always be represented in the Unknown Soldier which makes him an integral part of retelling the ANZAC legend. The Australian Metanarrative does change as similar evidence derives different results when looked at and represented in different perspectives. In any case, the Unknown Soldier still remains a part of the Australian Metanarrative which translates into Australia’s national story. The Unknown Soldier portrays the character and morals of the ANZAC soldiers during World War One and the role they played in the war. He is an important part of the Australian metanarrative as he is the representative of all the ANZAC soldiers and does not simply represent a single ANZAC soldier which since he is the representative of all ANZAC soldiers it is symbolic for him to have all the traits of the ANZAC soldier that relate to the values and qualities that ANZAC soldiers are believed to have during the war and in the “ANZAC Legend.” The ANZAC legend directly relates to the Australian metanarrative which in turn represents how the Australian Unknown Soldier is an integral part of the Australian Metanarrative. The Unknown Soldier is represented as a place to commemorate the fallen ANZAC soldiers from World War One. He is situated near the wall of remembrance to represent the importance of commemorating the soldiers that sacrificed their life to fight for Australia and defend it during that time. He is there to commemorate and to reflect the understanding of what the ANZAC soldiers were doing to protect the country and to show them that their sacrifices have not gone unnoticed. The Unknown Soldier does not celebrate their deaths; it is there for the families of veterans, for younger and older generations to pay respects to the ANZAC soldiers for fighting for our freedom and our country. Many Australians are unable to partake in visiting their relative’s gravestone overseas and rely on the Unknown Soldier as the link between their family and their relatives that fought and lost their lives during World War One. Celebration of the fallen soldiers in World War One would be considered inappropriate as they died for their country, to defend it and to ensure people in that time period were able to live safely. A celebration of our ANZAC soldiers who lost their life would be inadequate to describe the total impact they had on Australia’s history. The celebration of the fallen ANZAC soldiers only recognises what was gained rather than the things that were lost which does not represent the true values and morals of the ANZAC soldiers. “An evolving culture of commemoration in the Great War had made the public celebration of the one, known, man largely incompatible with the private grief of thousands”. The Australian War Memorial is dedicated to provide a place of commemoration of all AN ZAC soldiers who...
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