Good afternoon members of the Australian English literature society, I’m so thankful and privileged to be here today. Throughout many centuries, we have seen the devastation and heartache brought into our lives by the continuous negativity and hate surrounding vicious war attacks. Today I am here to give you an insight into the way that poets through history have used war as a meaningful way source of literature to change and influence the lives of others. The poets in which we will be looking at, are Wilfred Owen and Rupert Brooke.
Owen and Brooke were both poets writing during the First World War with poems containing the themes of war. They both have very different perspectives on the topic. In both Owen’s poems Dulce et decorum Est and insensibility, he highlights the horror and terrifying experiences seen in first hand from his own experience of being a soldier of war. Both these poems give the reader a sense of fear and unfamiliarly by explaining the pain and suffering endured throughout the war. He also expresses his own feelings about how dying at war for your country is not as honourable and glorious as it seems , he believes that no matter the cause of a soldiers death , it’s very painful and disheartening to all those around.
While on the other hand in Brooke’s poem, The Soldier gives off the impression that dying in war and battle for one’s country is a very honourable and glorious time. A belief that can be seen in Brookes poem is that he believes it is a
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The Soldier is one of numerous poems written at the beginning of war (before ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’) to attract naive young men who believed enrolling in war would be an exciting adventure allowing them to travel the world. Brooke welcomes death in his sonnet and expresses that he feels privileged to have been raised in England, believing it was a blessing.
Often, personal experiences are what influence a poet’s writing. Since the 1600s and up until World War One, poets have been heavily impacted by the glorification of war, as well as the catastrophic losses the world has suffered from. Poets such as Richard Lovelace and Lord Tennyson glorified the sacrifices soldiers made for their countries and honored them. While poets like Mary Borden and Wilfred Owen expressed their outrage towards war because they have witnessed the brutality and wickedness of it. In the two poetry collections, diction is the main factor in establishing the tone and theme of each poem.
For Brooke, war was a different experience. It was not that he did not recognize death and trauma, but it was that he perceived it in a different light. Brooke thought of dying for one’s country as honorable, admirable, and something of what a hero would do. Similar to a lot of what we see in modern pro-war propaganda, these descriptions are attributed with anyone who is willing to take on the “good fight for freedom”. It is possible that Brooke’s poems are filled with the patriotic beliefs that they are, purely due to pro-war propaganda, as the influence it has on people is remarkable and
Wilfred Owen can be considered as one of the finest war poets of all times. His war poems, a collection of works composed between January 1917, when he was first sent to the Western Front, and November 1918, when he was killed in action, use a variety of poetic techniques to allow the reader to empathise with his world, situation, emotions and thoughts. The sonnet form, para-rhymes, ironic titles, voice, and various imagery used by Owen grasp the prominent central idea of the complete futility of war as well as explore underlying themes such as the massive waste of young lives, the horrors of war, the hopelessness of war and the loss of religion. These can be seen in the three poems, ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’, ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ and
‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ is another of Wilfred Owen’s poems that conveys inner human conflict, in terms of past doings in World War I. The poem was written in 1917 at Craiglockhart (Owen’s first battle after his rehabilitation due to ‘shellshock’). It portrays an inner change in his approach to war and it’s gruesome environment:
World War One poets Rupert Brooke and Wilfred Owen both use poetry to examine their differing perspectives surrounding the idea of heroism in war. Brooke’s The Soldier depicts an idealistic, patriotic view towards fighting for his country, whereas Owen’s Dulce et Decorum est demonstrates a realistic view of the senseless horrors of war. Both poets utilise similar poetic techniques of imagery and sound devices to express their contradictory views of the atrocious events of the greatest war that the world had ever seen at that time.
Wilfred Owen’s “Dulce et Decorum Est” is a poem made of four stanzas in an a, b, a, b rhyme scheme. There is hardly any rhythm to the entire poem, although Owen makes it sound like it is in iambic pentameter in some lines. Every stanza has a different amount of lines, ranging from two to twelve. To convey the poem’s purpose, Owen uses an unconventional poem style and horrid, graphic images of the frontlines to convey the unbearable circumstances that many young soldiers went through in World War I. Not only did these men have to partake in such painful duties, but these duties contrasted with the view of the war made by the populace of the mainland country. Many of these people are pro-war and would never see the battlefield themselves. Owen’s use of word choice, imagery, metaphors, exaggeration, and the contrast between the young, war-deteriorated soldiers and populace’s favorable view of war creates Owen’s own unfavorable view of the war to readers.
Wilfred Owen’s encapsulates the authentic experiences of the soldiers from war which creates a strong sense of relation between the poems and the responder. The composer expresses their suffering through contradictory interpretations of war’s brutality and the futile sacrifice of youthful soldiers. In the poems ‘Anthem For A Doomed Youth’ and ‘Dulce Et Decorum Est’ the theme of the brutal reality of the deaths in war, brings the word of Owen’s poems to flesh for the reader. This evokes an emotional response from the responder, engaging with and creating a sentimental relationship with the reader. By the use of powerful imagery and emotive language, Owen evokes realism to the responder, placing them into the front lines of war, making them empathise the reality and brutality of war. Hence, the audience feels guilt and sorrow towards the youthful soldiers, therefore the poems do not let the reader view the soldiers’ experiences from a comfortable distance, rather manifesting the reality of war from the composer to the reader
“Dulce et Decorum Est” is a poem written by English soldier and a poet, Wilfred Owen. He has not only written this poem, but many more. Such as “Insensibility”, “Anthem for Doomed Youth”, “Futility”, “Exposure”, and “Strange Meeting” are all his war poems. (Poets.org) His poetry shows the horror of the war and uncovers the hidden truths of the past century. Among with his other poems “Dulce et Decorum Est” is one of the best known and popular WWI poem. This poem is very shocking as well as thought provoking showing the true experience of a soldiers in trenches during war. He proves the theme suffering by sharing soldiers’ physical pain and psychological trauma in the battlefield. To him that was more than just fighting for owns country. In this poem, Owen uses logos, ethos, and pathos to proves that war was nothing more than hell.
As an anti-war poet, Wilfred Owen uses his literary skills to express his perspective on human conflict and the wastage involved with war, the horrors of war, and its negative effects and outcomes. As a young man involved in the war himself, Owen obtained personal objectivity of the dehumanisation of young people during the war, as well as the false glorification that the world has been influenced to deliver to them. These very ideas can be seen in poems such as 'Anthem for Doomed Youth' and 'Dulce ET Decorum EST Pro Patria Mori'. Owen uses a variety of literary techniques to convey his ideas.
The poem “Soldier” is Brooke’s views on the possible occurrence of his own death in the field and what he feels that foreign country would gain from his death. When viewing his own death Brooke only looks at the thoughts and ways England has provided him with in the course of his life. Towards the end of the poem as if looking at the end of his life he mentions that he feels no anger or feelings of evil or hate toward the enemy or anything else but instead recollects all the wonderful things about his country.
The First World War was a time of great loss of life and bloodshed. Wilfred Owen, a soldier fighting with the British Army, wrote the poem Dulce et Decorum est to describe, possibly to the public, the horrific consequences of taking part and fighting in the war. During the poem, he describes the aftermath of a poison gas attack, and the injuries sustained by a soldier whom had inhaled the deadly substance. Owen uses gruesome imagery to vividly show in verse the horrible death the soldier faces, in the trenches of France. The poem Dulce et Decorum est is widely regarded as one of the greatest war poems ever written, and is a fine example of an anti-war protest in the form of poetry.
“In his poetry, Wilfred Owen depicts the horror and futility of war and the impact war has on individuals.”
War is not heroic. War is sickness, struggle, and death. This is the message that poet and World War I soldier Wilfred Owen wanted to instill in his people back home. Those back home talked of glory and national pride and rooted for their soldiers, however, they were unaware of the horrors these soldiers witnessed and experienced. The soldiers and their people back home were not only separated by distance but by mental barriers, which Owen showcases in his poetry. Owen’s use of personification in “Anthem for Doomed Youth” degrades the soldiers to objects to show how the war dehumanized them to intentionally create a disconnect between the audience and the soldiers.
Owen’s poem, Dulce et Decorum Est, describes his experience as a soldier on the front line of World War I and gives his account of the horrors of chemical warfare and the deaths of his comrades providing a historically accurate portrayal of the details of war in the trenches. Owen’s image of the soldiers reflects the historical testimonies of soldiers’ living conditions in World War I. In the first stanza of his poem, Owen