All Quiet on the Western Front Essay 12

Topics: Erich Maria Remarque, All Quiet on the Western Front, Nationalism Pages: 4 (1441 words) Published: April 1, 2006
The Book All Quiet on the Western Front is written by Erich Maria Remarque. The story takes place in late World War I in German and French front line. The Author has written the book combining his own experiences from war. He also tried to educate his readers about brutality, destruction and soldiers' point of views of war.

The protagonist in the book is a young soldier called Paul Baumer. There is no specific character as antagonist but I think the antagonist is the war itself. Even though Paul was excited to join the army at beginning, in the war Paul learns the true meaning of war and oppose it. War only brings destruction and death to many lives. It shatters soldiers' dreams and ruins their lives, especially the youngsters' who haven't even explored their life.

Theme is one of the main parts in every literary work. There are many themes shown through out this book. The major theme is the brutality and destructions of war which is shown in every chapter in the book. Everyday people are dying in combats and being seriously wounded physically and psychologically. Also the author points out the role of nationalism and patriotic idealism and betrayal of the younger generation by the older generation in promoting war. The reasons that men joined this war were nationalism and patriotism, which were soon shown to be false and tools used by those in power to control a nation and conquer piece of land. Paul and his friends were seduced into joining the army by nationalist ideas as their teacher talk about glory of joining the war, but the experiences of fighting quickly teach them about insignificance of nationalism in the face of the war's horrors. It also shows them there is no glory in this war. The every day's combat and bombardment reveals the fear of losing one's life in any moment in the war. We also notice the effect war has on soldiers when Paul has difficulty remembering his past, when he goes back home for few days and can't pick up where he left off...
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