Glory of Women – Siegfried Sassoon
You love us when we're heroes, home on leave,
Or wounded in a mentionable place.
You worship decorations; you believe
That chivalry redeems the war's disgrace.
You make us shells. You listen with delight,
By tales of dirt and danger fondly thrilled.
You crown our distant ardours while we fight,
And mourn our laurelled memories when we're killed.
You can't believe that British troops "retire"
When hell's last horror breaks them, and they run,
Trampling the terrible corpses--blind with blood.
O German mother dreaming by the fire,
While you are knitting socks to send your son
His face is trodden deeper in the mud.
Siegfried Sassoon was one of the great war poets of World War I, as well as a military hero and an admired writer of prose. He became known as a writer of satirical anti-war verse during the First World War, where he offered a violent yet realistic representation of war, through his poetry. ‘’Glory of Women’’ was written in 1917.
The role of women during the Great War has been portrayed in many different ways throughout poetry. In "Glory of Women’’, Siegfried Sassoon makes adequate use of irony within the structure and content in order to represent his view of the role of the young, working, British woman during this time period. It was a crucial time for women with so many men going to war and in response; women came in to replace the men. Women were stereotyped to perform traditional tasks such as nursing, selling war bonds, munitions and factory working, which however changed. When you first come across the title of the poem ‘’Glory of Women’’, one may take the title of the poem literally and assume that Siegfried Sassoon is glorifying women. However, one comes to realize that the word ‘’glory’’ is used ironically. In the ‘’Glory of Women’’, Siegfried Sassoon is speaking in second person as he directly refers to the women of World War I. He uses words such as ‘’we’’ instead of ‘’I’’...
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