War Poetry: Attitudes To War

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The Ways in Which Jessie Pope & Wilfred Owen Convey Different Attitudes to War Soldiers were recruited for World War One by volunteering themselves to join the Army. Later on in the war Conscription was introduced which meant almost every man and teenager had to fight unless they had a medical condition. One recruitment writer was Jessie Pope. In her poem Who’s For the Game she presents war as a game of rugby. You can tell this because of some of the vocabulary and phrases in the poem. Those are: “who’ll grip a tackle...who’ll toe the line…come back with a crunch.”In the first three lines of each Quatrain is about if you go to war you will be considered a hero and the last line is about if you do not go you will be considered a coward. This poem says nothing very bad about war apart from the fact you may come back with a crutch, but the truth was you probably wouldn’t come back at all and if you did you would be missing limbs or be seriously injured. But in comparison the poem “Dulce et Decorum Est” written by Wilfred Owen aims to show war in it’s true form and in the worst possible way, so that people really know the truth and what it was like to be in the war. In the first stanza Owen describes the soldiers as they try to move away from their “shift” on the front line. The description of the soldiers as they painfully move is one of pain and suffering. They are “bent double, like old beggars under sacks” which means they can hardly move and their backs are all bent. “Knocked-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge” this part is the worst for the soldiers’ conditions and health. They are coughing from a previous gas attack and they have to try and get through a path of mud. The pace is very slow; it is achieved by “like old beggars under sacks… we cursed through sludge” At the start of stanza two the pace changes to a one of tiredness and
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