Literary Analysis Of 'Dulce Et Decorum Est'

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The poem ‘Dulce et Decorum est’ by Wilfred Owen is a shocking and thought provoking poem which details the experiences of soldiers in the trenches during WW1. Owen uses graphic descriptions of life in the trenches to convey a powerful message to the reader. He uses many important techniques to describe to the readers the graphics of war. He also uses his poetry as a vehicle to express his ideas on the horror and futility of war. This poem was made to un idolize the idea of war and to create an emotional response.
The reader is introduced to the horror of war in the first lines of the poem as Owen depicts the poor physical condition of the men. “Bent double, like old beggars under sacks”. This simile demonstrates to the people reading …show more content…

The change of pace in “Gas! Gas! Quick, boys!” is a stark contrast to the slow, laborious pace of the march as reflected in the long sentences of the first verse. The sentence structure encapsulates the panic and urgency felt by the men. The use of short words and exclamation marks mirror their alarm and the words ‘Gas! Gas!’ Are used to reflect the unexpected and abrupt nature of the attack. This emotionally affects me as reader because when reading the poem out load it changes the pace drastically and makes me feel upset because they were in such a hurry to put gas masks on.
Finally, the bitter irony of the poem is revealed in the last lines as he attacks those who would argue that death in war is glorious, “my friend, you would not tell with such high zest”. Here, Owen employs the use of second person to address the stay at home patriots and those who would encourage young men to give up their lives for their country. The use of ‘my friend’ is deeply ironic and betrays his anger as he holds these people accountable for what he and so many others has had to endure. The irony of the poem makes me upset because people are glorifying war and making it seem as though it is something that young men should sign up for.

In conclusion, the poem ‘Dulce et Decorum est’ by Wilfred Owen is a deeply poignant poem that uses a variety of powerful techniques to express a very powerful

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