All Quiet On The Western Front Theme Analysis

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The loss of innocence is a blatant theme in the novel All Quiet on the Western Front. The group of eighteen year-old boys that introduced at the beginning have no idea of the hardships and brutalities of war that are to come for these young men. Following their exposing to battle and the front, the boys have become men. They are no longer naive and innocent before their deployment. The theme is also shown with the protagonist, Krebs, in the short story “Soldier’s Home.” Krebs is home on leave, and does not have passion for life anymore. This saddening topic is also shown in the poem “Anthem for Doomed Youth.” All three of these works of literature have the same surreal characteristics. In the short story, “Soldier’s Home,” the main character, …show more content…
“Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs, -- The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells.” (Owen) These boys are exposed to such tragedies at quite a young age. Most of them lose their lives as well. “What candles may be held to speed them all? Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes- Shall shine the holy glimmers of good-byes.” (Owen) At the end of the poem, it is revealed how immature the boys are, but how advanced what they are doing is. “The pallor of girls; brows shall be their pall; Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds.” (Owen) This poem shows how boys at that age are not ready for the tragedies that come with enlisting in the …show more content…
Their loss of their boyhood begins with the influence from their former teacher, Kantorek. He was very adamant that the boys were the future of the country. It is their civil duty to enlist and fight. He calls them the Iron Youth. None of these boys are over the age of twenty, so it is hard to imagine these boys being the future of Germany, since they are so naive. Following the orders of their teacher, the men eagerly enlist, The beginning of their loss of innocence most likely begins at training camp. Their camp official, Himmelstoss, is extremely vulgar and barbaric. Two of the men, were bedwetters. The boys’ spirits were broken at training camp. Training camp marked the metamorphosis of the boys becoming men, or at least the mindset of a man. After the inhumane treatment by Himmelstoss, the men embark on their first journey in the war, training camp. They are off to battle, not expecting of what is to come in the trenches. Even though these boys have been through a lot at training camp, there is still much more to come at the front. Seeing young boys fighting in the boots of men is saddening. “I nod. We stick out our chests, shave in the open, shove our hands in our pockets, inspect the recruits and feel ourselves to be stone-age veterans.” (Remarque) A few of the new recruits that come to fight after Paul’s group get so scared, they soil

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