Essay on An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge By Ambrose Bierce

1005 Words Feb 9th, 2016 5 Pages
Although war is often idealized as an opportunity for wealth and glory, such aggressive patriotism only results in death in the end. In “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” by Ambrose Bierce, Bierce communicates the idea that war brings only death and anguish by utilizing literary devices in order to convey this theme. Bierce particularly uses irony and similes in order to convey the message that war does not yield glory. Instead, he employs these literary devices in order to reveal that war is nothing but an agent of death. Bierce uses irony and similes in order to convey the theme that war brings only death, not glory or distinction.
Bierce’s usage of irony portrays war as the agent of death and misery instead of glory and prestige. Farquhar’s motives for participating in the Civil War was that it was an “opportunity for distinction” (3). He believed that the war would bring him glory and notability, idealizing war as an opportunity for material riches. Instead, he was sentenced to death by the Union army. This is ironic because although Farquhar expected victory and riches, he received only death in the end. Furthermore, as a result from participating in war, his fate is sealed with death and misery in place of glory and prestige. During Farquhar’s execution, his executioners were portrayed as indifferent sentinels in the face of war. When the two sentinels were guarding the bridge, they were depicted as ignorant to their roles as Farquhar’s executioners: “it did not…

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