Dulce Et Decorum Est And Charge Of The Light Brigade Analysis Essay Example
Dulce Et Decorum Est And Charge Of The Light Brigade Analysis Essay Example

Dulce Et Decorum Est And Charge Of The Light Brigade Analysis Essay Example

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Within this essay, we will evaluate and examine the differing interpretations of the war theme presented by the two poets based on their origins. The initial step involves investigating and deliberating on the historical context of both poets. Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem, "The Charge of the Light Brigade," recounts the British soldiers' experience and their disgraceful defeat to the Russians. On the other hand, Wilfred Owen's "Dulce et Decorum est" depicts the ghastly reality of life inside a World War One trench.

The text describes the first-hand account of witnessing the death of his fellow soldiers in the battle against the German army. The poem includes a quote, "Half a league, Half a league onward," which establishes a rhythmic marching tempo and showcases the use of alliteration. The line "All in the valley of death rode the s


ix hundred" serves as an ominous foreshadowing of their tragic fate. The author conveys that death and destruction are inevitably approaching as symbolized by the valley.

Tennyson deliberately added the line "Forward the light brigade! Charge for the guns" to increase the excitement and heroism of the battle in his poem. His aim was to captivate the imagination of male youth in Britain and encourage them to join the already undermanned army, despite the fear present. The following lines "Not though the soldier knew, Some one had blundered: Their's not to make reply, Their's not to reason why, Their's but to do and die." portray a sense of anonymity in the commanding officer, who simply orders his troops without explanation or discussion.

This excerpt suggests that British soldiers didn't have any rights and were required to obe

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blindly, regardless of whether they were aware of their role as mere pawns of the British Empire. The quote "Cannon to the right of them, Cannon to the left of them, Cannon in front of them" underlines the soldiers' dire situation while highlighting the enemy's advantage. Moreover, "Volleyed and thundered; Stormed at with shot and shell, Boldly they rode and well," portrays the unrelenting enemy fire that soldiers had to withstand for their nation.

As the six hundred rode into the mouth of Hell, they faced the jaws of death. The description of death as a beast with jaws is an oxymoron, as death cannot possess physical features or human qualities like Hell, which is a mythological concept. This manipulative technique was used to excite and encourage young British men to view the war as an exciting adventure worth participating in.

Amidst the fast paced battle, the troops' sabres gleamed as they turned in the air, heightening the tension. The enemy had overwhelmed the British soldiers, leaving them reeling and shattered from sabre strokes, ultimately riding back in defeat, with the exception of the six hundred who persisted.

The quote provides a good example of Onomatopoeia as "Shattered and sundered" gives a mental image of shattering glass. Additionally, "Cannon to the right of them, Cannon to the left of them, Cannon behind them" shows that they are surrounded and engulfed by the enemy while "Volleyed and thundered; Stormed at with shot and shell, while horse and hero fell, They that had fought so well, Came through the mouth of hell." implies that these men are heroes who have fought valiantly in battle. However, the use of the

word "Hero" gives a false, patriotic and heroic impression of these individuals.

Tennyson uses hyperbole to describe the courage of the soldiers in the poem. He mentions that they "came through the mouth of hell" and asks, "When can their glory fade? O the wild charge they made!" The poet portrays the soldiers as immortal heroes, using this rhetorical question deliberately as a tool of propaganda to inspire young British males to become soldiers themselves. Tennyson commands the audience to "Honour the charge they made! Honour the Light Brigade, Noble six hundred!" He urges them to follow the example of the soldiers who bravely fought in this event and feel a sense of patriotism.

The British Empire's attempt to regain control on the world through the battle was pointless. Recruitment drives and patriotic poets like Alfred Lord Tennyson influenced a young poet named Wilfred to join the British army. Owen condemns the false patriotism of those who stayed at home during the war, while describing the terrifying reality within the trenches as an eyewitness of World War One.

"Bent double like old beggars under sacks, knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge," showing the physical toll of war on soldiers. The weight of their arsenal has caused them to be bent double, and the use of alliteration in "knock-kneed" emphasizes their exhaustion. They cough like hags due to the grime and cold they face constantly. "Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots, but limped on, blood-shot."

The men in the poem were subjected to a brutal lifestyle that left them ravaged. Many of their feet were caked in dried blood as they had lost

their boots. Along with the following quote, the rhyming pattern alters the tempo and tone of the poem. This showcases Owen's poetic writing skill, giving the poem a sense of fastness and togetherness. The quoted lines, "All went lame; all blind; Drunk with fatigue, deaf even to the hoots of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind" attest to the men's delirium and exhaustion, causing them to lose control of their senses and stumble blindly forward like drunken men, barely conscious of their surroundings.

"Gas, Gas! Quick boys!" - The troops are jolted from their slumber by this exclamation, causing them to panic. The use of the word 'ecstasy' creates an image of a strange environment where time is difficult to discern due to the rush of adrenaline as the men struggle to secure their masks and extend their survival for yet another day. They flail around wildly, like a person engulfed in flames or lime...

Amidst the mist and green light, I witnessed the soldier's struggle, drowning like a fish out of water. The green hue represents septic infection and societal corruption which engulfs the soldiers one by one. The word 'floundering' signifies the soldier's inability to cope with the situation. Eventually, they all succumb to suffocation, overwhelmed by the deceitfulness of war. Observing his comrade's eyes roll back in agony and his face hanging there, Owen is reminded of the horrors of gas attacks. Witnessing such gruesome sights would have undoubtedly shattered him mentally. The paradoxical phrase 'his hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin' highlights the truth about the devil, sin personified, never sick of sinning.

The query presented is whether the

Devil would tire of sin if he were to experience war. The phrase "Dulce et Decorum est pro patria mori" is deemed an old falsehood that glorifies warfare, which is a pointed critique of individuals such as Alfred Lord Tennyson who attempt to do so. The speaker advises that it is not appropriate to entice youngsters with the prospect of triumphing in conflict.

By using Latin, the old Lie that war is noble is highlighted and aristocratic hypocrites such as Tennyson are mocked. The poems "The Charge of The Light Brigade" and "Dulce et Decorum est" are contrasting, with Tennyson using manipulation to recruit young British men into a futile war effort.

While one writer attempts to inspire patriotic fervor and restore former glory to the Empire through the use of hyperbole, Wilfred Owen takes a different approach. He seeks to warn those who are enamored with notions of war and patriotism, using his own real-life experiences to argue against the views of "stay at home" warmongers. Over the years, attitudes towards war have evolved, with the Elizabethan era being a time where soldiers who voiced their opinions were court-martialed and shot, in contrast to today's more liberal society. Tennyson's outdated views on war have been replaced by the perspectives of young revolutionaries like Wilfred Owen who have witnessed the true nature of war and exposed its false aspects of "patriotism and glory".

"Dulce et decorum est" is referred to as "the old lie."

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