Anger and Injustice Described in Wilfred Owen's Poem Dulce et Decorum est

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The poem "Dulce et Decorum est" was written by Wilfred Owen during World War One, and is probably the most popular war-poem ever written.The title is part of the Latin phrase 'Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori' which means 'It is sweet and right to die for your country'. Wilfred Owen saw the war first-hand and this poem is about a gas attack that he witnessed. Throughout this poem Owen gives the sense of anger and injustice through the use of many different poetic techniques.

Wilfred Owen emphasises the condition of the men in order to show the reader the effect that the war had on the soldiers. He often compares the young soldiers to elderly people: "Bent double, like old beggars under sacks"
In this simile the soldiers are
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Wilfred Owen described the effects of a gas attack on a soldier who failed to get his gas mask on very vividly through imagery and word choice: "He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning"
The word choice here makes this statement very strong. Owen uses an alliteration of the letters 'ing' and all of the words in the alliteration are harsh words. Repeating these choke-like words make us imagine the soldier literally choking up his lungs. The word 'plunges' also gives us the image of desperation and show us clearly how the man is moving. We are also told the extent of the

pain caused by the gas: "And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime"
The simile makes us imagine being covered in fire or lime which is very painful and so we can understand the pain that the soldier is going through. The word choice with 'flound'ring' is also very good as the way it sounds in itself lets us know how the man is behaving (flapping about). Owen then goes on to describe the after-effects of the gas attack on the man: "And watch the white eyes writhing in his face"
This tells us that the soldiers eyes have rolled back into his forehead and Owen can now see only the white part of his eyes and the word writhing emphasises the eye movement of the man. Owen uses an alliteration in this line to draw attention to the man's pain. These all show us that it is not sweet to

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