Wilfred Owen Speech

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Script a speech to HSC students. With reference to ‘Disabled’ and one other poem, discuss the central themes and methods used to develop them.

Good morning students,
Wilfred Owen was a British soldier and poet in WW1. He was thoroughly shocked by the horrors of war and based his poetry on his various experiences. In his poem, “Disabled”, he highlights the loss and pity of war, while in his poem “Dulce Et Decorum Est” he emphasises that there is no glory or honour in dying in war. Through the use of vivid visual imagery and various literary techniques he is able to develop these themes and make us question humanity and the purpose of war.

In his poem “Disabled” Owen highlights the theme of loss which can be seen in the remembrance of the man’s past life. Owen uses the plosive alliteration sounds of “play and pleasure after day” to highlight what is now lost to the man. He also uses visual imagery to enable us to be able to picture this time. The metaphor “glow lamps budded in the light blue trees” shows a time of enjoyment but of which is lost to the man. Also through the alliteration in “girls glanced lovelier as the air grew dim” he creates a place in our minds of youth at the beginning of their lives, who are care free, however now for this man he wants it to end as this has all been lost to him. Through the use of this visual imagery Owen shows the real loss of going to war.

Also in “Disabled” Owen enhances the pity of war through the impact of the man’s suffering. He was rejected on his return and his sacrifice was ignored and unappreciated. This is emphasised in the terms ‘some’, ‘but’ and ‘only’ which diminish him further. His life was taken from him. This can be seen in, “take whatever pity they may dole”; which shows that pity is all he has left. In the final four lines his self-hatred and bitterness is made clear by the way “women's eyes passed from him to the strong men that were whole”. This represents the guilt that has made him feel...
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