All Quiet on the Western Front Assignment
Have you ever wondered why the survivors of the war are shell shocked or exasperated? The book “All Quiet on The Western Front” written by Erich Maria Remarque was written in 1929. The book is giving you the oversight of the war experience. The main character is Paul, Paul is recently a war member that was deceived into joining the war. Paul is apart of the younger generation and was falsely educated by the older generation on joining the war. Paul and his friends later experienced that the older generation fabricated the war experience, they were told the war was a relaxed and luxury place to be. When Paul and his friends started to fight in the war they expressed that the war was bloody, cruel, and the fights were animal-like.
“For us lads of eighteen they ought to have been mediators and guides to the world of maturity . . . to the future . . . in our hearts we trusted them. The idea of authority, which they represented, was associated in our minds with a greater insight and a more humane wisdom. But the first death we saw shattered this belief. We had to recognize that our generation was more to be trusted than theirs. . . .
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The first bombardment showed us our mistake, and under it the world as they had taught it to us broke in pieces.” This quote is used from Chapter One and it portrays that Paul is experiencing the process of being encouraged into join the war. He is witnessing how the older generation is deliberately trying to get the younger generation to put there life on the line to fight for a country and chances are they won’t survive. The war is a patriotic conspiracy, once you join the war you are sacrificing yourself and are almost dying in the process.
Member of the older generation were deemed educated and were portrayed as role models for the younger generation. The members of the younger generation were sadly mistaken when they noticed the older generation members were betraying them to joining the war and to sacrifice themselves. Once the war began Paul realized the harsh realities of the war experience and shortly realized the older generation members set the younger generation up for failure.
Paul felt resentment and vexation towards the older generations actions and reacted out of anger. Paul also realized the older generation were not involved in the war and always bashed the younger generation for there weakling behavior. The older generation failed to educate the younger generation on the teaching of the war. Since the younger generation has involved themselves in the war they have to be self-taught in having to defend themselves.
“At the sound of the first droning of the shells we rush back, in one part of our being, a thousand years. By the animal instinct that is awakened in us we are led and protected. It is not conscious; it is far quicker, much more sure, less fallible, than consciousness. . . . It is this other, this second sight in us, that has thrown us to the ground and saved us, without our knowing how. . . . We march up, moody or good-tempered soldiers—we reach the zone where the front begins and become on the instant human animals.”
This quote was used in chapter 4, Paul describes the mental mentality that soldiers experience in the war. In the war Paul describes the animal like instinct that you have in the war rather than the wholesome everyday mindset that is common for others to have. In the war there is never a time to relax, you continuously have to be ready and on guard to fight. Soldiers would have a casual stroll and have to drop down to the ground to avoid any attacks or debris. When being in battle you have to be cautious and desperately require attention to your peripheral vision. Using your peripheral vision helps you by avoiding shells, bombs, and debris. The depredation you seek from war carries throughout your life and disfigures your mental, physical, and emotional stability.
“Just as we turn into animals when we go up to the line . . . so we turn into wags and loafers when we are resting. . . . We want to live at any price; so we cannot burden ourselves with feelings which, though they may be ornamental enough in peacetime, would be out of place here. Kemmerich is dead, Haie Westhus is dying . . . Martens has no legs anymore, Meyer is dead, Max is dead, Beyer is dead, Hammerling is dead . . . it is a damnable business, but what has it to do with us now—we live.”
Chapter 7 is initiated to be a stern passage of the novel where Paul interprets the process of having to disconnect himself from the emotional depression of being a war member. Having to unhitch yourself from the war is a huge importance because of the physical and mental depression that comes with joining the war. For Paul and his friends to not go into a depression with joining the war they have to recline their stories from bloody like wars to luxuriated and entertainment. Paul expresses the best ways to get through the war process is to get the negative views out of your mind and to look forward to after the war with luxurious and relaxing.
As we approach the end of Erich Maria Remarque’s book, All Quiet on the Western Front we capture the persuasive and rationalities that connects the trepidation of being a member of the war. We also understand the delicacy of human life and the stress that changes their lives. The book presents a broad scenery of the life of war and gives a description of how the war experience changes mankind.
The ending event that occurs at the end of the book, Kemmerich dies and the soldiers are only concerned about who gets rewarded his boots. The war is a concerning factor in this incident because the soldiers loose deep sorrow on negative actions that take place towards other soldiers. Paul gradually loses his emotions towards his friends deaths and proceeds to continue like nothing occurred. The ending is also reasoning to the arrangement of events dispensed leading to the end of the novel. We acknowledge the effects the war has and the negative outcome, accompanied by Paul he expresses to the readers that you can die in any amount of seconds.