Sep 15, First Trenches on Western Front The deadlock caused by the Battle of Marne leads to the digging of the first trench lines of the war.
His memories of the time before the war show that he was once a very different man from the despairing soldier who now narrates the novel. Paul is a compassionate and sensitive young man; before the war, he loved his family and wrote poetry.
Because of the horror of the war and the anxiety it induces, Paul, like other soldiers, learns to disconnect his mind from his feelings, keeping his emotions at bay in order to preserve his sanity and survive. As a result, the compassionate young man becomes unable to mourn his dead comrades, unable to feel at home among his family, unable to express his feelings about the war or even talk about his experiences, unable to remember the past fully, and unable to conceive of a future without war.
But a man gets used to that sort of thing in the army. Paul frequently considers the past and the future from the perspective of his entire generation, noting that, when the war ends, he and his friends will not know what to do, as they have learned to be adults only while fighting the war.
The longer that Paul survives the war and the more that he hates it, the less certain he is that life will be better for him after it ends. The war destroys Paul long before it kills him. Napoleon also springs to mind as a historical model for Kantorek.
The inclusion of a seemingly anachronistic literary type—the scheming or dangerous diminutive man—may seem out of place in a modern novel. Yet this quality of Kantorek arguably reflects the espousal of dated ideas by an older generation of leaders who betray their followers with manipulations, ignorance, and lies.
That Kantorek is eventually drafted and makes a terrible soldier reflects the uselessness of the ideals that he touts. Himmelstoss is just such a figure: Himmelstoss is extremely cruel to his recruits, forcing them to obey ridiculous and dangerous orders simply because he enjoys bullying them.
Himmelstoss forces his men to stand outside with no gloves on during a hard frost, risking frostbite that could lead to the amputation of a finger or the loss of a hand.
At this stage of the novel, Himmelstoss represents the meanest, pettiest, most loathsome aspects of humanity that war draws out. But when he is sent to fight at the front, Himmelstoss experiences the same terror and trauma as the other soldiers, and he quickly tries to make amends for his past behavior.
In this way, Remarque exhibits the frightening and awesome power of the trenches, which transform even a mad disciplinarian into a terrorized soldier desperate for human companionship.American readers may be familiar with “All Quiet on the Western Front,” by German army veteran Erich Maria Remarque, and Ernest Hemingway’s “A Farewell to Arms,” two World War I novels.
All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque All Quiet on the Western Fron t, by Erich Maria Remarque, is also a poignant account of war and homecoming by a . Sep 03, · Considered by many the greatest war novel of all time, All Quiet on the Western Front is Erich Maria Remarque’s masterpiece of the German experience during World War I.
I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow/5.
On this day Erich Maria Remarque arrived on the Western Front. This likely coorespondes to Paul's arrival to the Front.
The horrors of battle force the soldiers to develop animalistic instincts and a pack-like bond. There is no place for individuals in war, and therefore no place for a traditional coming-of-age tale.
The opening pages of All Quiet on the Western Front emphasize how war dissolves individual men into a single, collective identity.
Paul Bäumer. As the novel’s narrator and protagonist, Paul is the central figure in All Quiet on the Western Front and serves as the mouthpiece for Remarque’s meditations about alphabetnyc.comhout the novel, Paul’s inner personality is contrasted with the way the war forces him to act and feel.