All quiet on the western front
Remarried was a militant pacifist after his time serving in the German army and bluntly exposes the errors of war In hopes that the next generation of German youth may learn from their countries mistakes and lead better leaves without the grievance of war. It Is precisely for this reason that Doll Hitler had Armature’s book burned and forced him to flee the country under the danger of certain execution.
Paul Beamer the main character of the novel is a young, intelligent, enthusiastic patriotic teenager with strong ideals which are vehemently strained upon during the war not only because of the fighting but also because of the social ramifications that came with it. Paul Beamer believes that the people he was taught to trust have betrayed him or let him down. Paul and his class mates feel betrayed by their school master Keynoter.
Keynoter incessantly urges all of his students to join the army whether or not they want to fall in line. The unspoken trust between a teacher and his students is broken the moment Joseph Beam, a student who initially refuses to go to war but concedes because of Keynoter;s perpetual speeches and many methods of persuasion, is one of the first killed in war. “During Drill time Keynoter gave us long lectures until the hole of out class went, under his shepherding to the District Commandant and volunteered. (Remarried 1 1) this Is an example which Paul recalls of Keynoter abusing his authority and trust with his students in order to get them to sign up for the army before the draft. After beginning to experience the realities of war Paul laments never having able to have a guide he could trust in “And that is why they let us down so badly… For us lads of eighteen they ought to have been mediators and guides to the world of maturity, the world of work, of duty, of culture, of progress- to he future. ” (Remarried 12) .
Keynoter;s letter In which he calls them the Iron youth Is met with bitterness and anger, they express their desire for Keynoter to come to the front lines to live the atrocities of war he had described as romantic and patriotic. Paul feels let down by the Doctors and orderlies at the front. One of the most sacred vocations a man can have is to be a medical practitioner and preserve the lives of others. But In the front the doctors have seen so much gore and death they have almost been desensitizing In away. Paul feels let down by his father.
When Paul returns home the translator for him Is not easy, the war has changed him. When Paul decides to put on his civilian clothes he realizes they fit him tightly “l have grown in the army’ (164 Remarried) he says. Paul has not only grown physically but he has also grown wiser through his experiences in war. Paul can no longer relate to his father who always seems adamant to talk about the war, which is a subject Paul really wishes to avoid as much as possible. During combat many of the things Paul saw will grow out of control and drive him mad.
I realize he does not know that a man cannot talk of such things; I would do it willingly but it is too dangerous for me to put these things into words. I am afraid they might then become gigantic and I be no longer able to master them. (165 Remarried). Paul finds some solace in his mother who does not inquire about the war, but Paul nonetheless feels alienated from his own family unable to feel comfortable. Paul makes the decision to return to his comrades at the front because they have become his family now and are the only people he can relate to.