War Poem Comparison Essay

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Gavin Ross Pre-Entry Access Class – English Module Tutors – Aimee McNair and Kevin Wilson Q. In an essay of not more than 1,500 words compare and contrast ONE PAIR of the two pairs of poems printed below. Your answer should exhibiy a clear understanding of each poem’s meaning and tone, and you should consider the effect and importance of formal features, such as rhyme scheme, sound patterning, word choice, figurative language and punctuation. Date handed in : 31st January 2011 This essay will compare the poems “On Passing the New Menin Gate” by Siegfried Sassoon (1927) and “Anthem For Doomed Youth” by Wilfred Owen (1917) and decipher whether there are any contrasts of worthwhile note. It will explore the meanings of…show more content…
Sassoon and Owen’s rhetorical style help connect the reader to the events being described and communicate successfully their feelings of anguish about the war. Sassoon and Owen further communicate their contempt for the war and its unforgiving treatment of the soldiers through the use of alliteration. Sassoon says, “Paid, with a pile of peace-complacent stone” (line 7). The sarcastic use of “Paid” suggests Sassoon does not believe the Menin Gate to be a worthwhile reward. The personification of the monument when Sassoon says, “peace-complacent stone” (line 7) creates the idea that the monument has an unjustified feeling of self-worth and importance and stands arrogantly, believing itself to be a comparable reward to the loss of life and misery endured by thousands of soldiers and families. The repetition of the letter “p” makes it sound as though Sassoon is spitting his words out in a bitter and degrading manner and is effective in demonstrating his anger about the perceived ignorance displayed by the memorial (Internet 10). Owen also achieves an emphatic effect when he uses alliteration in “Anthem For Doomed Youth” when he says, “Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle” (line 3). This harsh sounding repetition of the letter “r” is used for the purpose of sound imagery to help convey the horrors of
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