All Quiet On The Western Front

826 WordsNov 16, 20164 Pages
Paul is German, but he can just as easily be any soldier. To an American reader, Baumer is "the enemy" since he is a German soldier in WWI. But through the expression of Baumer 's thoughts and emotions, we quickly realize the commonality between soldiers of both sides, and the pointlessness of war, with thousands of men dying for nothing. All Quiet on the Western Front separates the cold sterile facts and figures and gives the reader insight into the experiences of an ordinary soldier. The author’s main theme centers not only on the loss of innocence by Paul and his soldiers, but the loss of an entire generation. The soldiers of all nations watched their friends die, starve and lose a part of themselves. Paul’s story is universal and relevant today as was when it was first published. All Quiet on the Western Front is told from the perspective of German soldier, Paul Baumer, who journals about the brutality and callousness of war. The novel chronicles the demise of Paul and his classmates from high school graduation and military basic training to the trenches of WWI battlefields. Paul Baumer, is as an idealistic young poet swept away by the Rhetoric of his teacher and the misguided patriotism of his peers. He is in many ways just a child that hasn’t traveled beyond his own backyard. The novel starts off with Kemmerich dying a slow and painful death. Kemmerich owns a nice pair of boots. Fellow soldier, Muller, want them for himself. He is focused on his own survival,

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