‘I was only 19’ written by John Schumann performed by the band the Redgums is a highly emotive and meaningful song. It describes the typical war experience and post war experience of the Australian soldiers in the Vietnam War, it show cases the struggles and hardships that the soldiers faced. It explores the atrocities of war witnessed though the eyes of young soldiers. The physical trauma and emotional scaring they suffered upon their return. It is primarily about his conscription into the war and the side effects that came along with that.
The theme explores the horrifying and devastating effects that war has on the young soldiers involved. It shows the horrors and experiences; mental and physical problems that the young men had to deal with during and after the war. Some of these horrors included seeing their best mates killed in …show more content…
It made everyone consider the real gains of war and the point of war at all. It challenged the view of many people who thought it was correct that they could use conscription to manipulate the lives of many, especially the young men; many of who were not able to live their life to the full extent because of the wars that they faced. It commented on the lives of being a soldier returned from war. The poet’s purpose in writing this poem was to share the stories and experiences of those who went to war and what they went through. The poem is successful on being a voice for the forgotten heroes, the veterans of the war making a comment on social standards of that time. The overall message of the poem is to find empathy to learn and grow, so many young lives were lost during the Vietnam War, this song was able to combat all who thought it was right to rob this young men; some even younger than 19, of their life, their choices. This song influenced generations to make a change, to stand and find where