Thursday, November 7, 2019

The war begins Essays

The war begins Essays The war begins Essay The war begins Essay Essay Topic: Rudyard Kipling Poems Thomas Hardy Poems The First World War began on 4th August 1914, after much anticipation it was going to take place. Before the war started people presumed that it would all be over by Christmas, and that Britain would ambush the Germans and teach them a lesson. When war was declared, people gathered in Trafalgar Square cheering and very few people were against the war. The only people who were against the war were businessmen and the liberal party. A group of people who lacked enthusiasm for the war was the poets, however many chose to write about their support for the war, which in turn became printed in magazines and newspapers quickly turning into propaganda. Many of the common themes written about were the honour they would experience. As this was at the beginning stages of the war, Britain did not know much about going to war and not many people at the time had any experience of it. Therefore they presumed war was going to be honourable and that none of the Britains would die, but would return an d be honoured for fighting for their country. They wrote about how honourable it is to go to war and many quotes in poetry reflect this. In the poem For The Fallen it explains about the dead who have died. But in it there the writer uses quotations and words, which make the reader want to join the war. Words like proud immortal laughing glory music thrill and royal which are all contained in the poem, make the war sound like fun, that fighting in it will make a solider immortal. The music and laughing are all fun words which are going to make the reader want to join, however the theme of honour is contained with words like proud and her spirit all put emphasis on how glorifying the war is made to seem. The theme of honour is carried out greatly because at that time of 1914, people were proud of their country and taught that England was the best country of all. It made men want to fight for it, and they felt a certain degree of patriotism and honour that they carry for their country. In the poem A Music Hall Song the phase for your king and your country is used, again reflecting at the time that people were willing to die for a country that is deemed the best. People felt patriotic towards Britain and proud to fight for it. Other themes are those of excitement and romance. At that time, young men did not know what to do with their lives and the war offered them something to be able to live and work for. The excitement of becoming a hero thrilled young men but also young people love to indulge in dangerous activities, obviously war being a perfect one. War was something never really experienced to Britains before, so they presumed that it would be exciting and glorious. One young man described it as the romance of it the mystery and uncertainty of it. This proves the concept of war was warped and unrealistic. When the Britains was well into war, thats when people began to realise the true horror of it. The tone of many poems in the early days of war was very much positive towards the war, urging people to join up and stating all the glories and reasons of why people should join the war. The tone of one of the poems in particular is very strong. In Wake Up England the tone is bouncy, and sometimes can be quite harsh and shouting sounding. At the end of each sentence there are exclamation marks reflecting the shouty nature of the poem, which could be the chants, or songs that were sung in aid of the war. The tone is once again positive for the war in this poem, there are also capitals used at the end, perhaps meaning the loudness of the chanting and emphasis of the message England stands for honour. God defend the right. This is also the tone of the poem as it tells themes of patriotism and honour for their country. The poem is mainly about telling the people of England to wake up and get out there and fight. There are many themes talked about in the poem, which explores the positivi sm toward war such as heroism and patriotism stand England for honour and glory fame of their fathers. Imagery is also used in the poems although this becomes more graphic as the war goes on. In the beginning stages of the war, many poets explored the images of the countryside, as it was something Britain was proud of. In England is Happy Now, images of the countryside are used such as evn the warm beauty of this spring and summer and her hills and rivers and her chafing sea. These images are used to make the reader feel strongly about protecting these areas of tranquillity and hopefully going to the war to fight to save these areas from being bombed. Although these areas are not best known to many of the army people who are used to factories, buildings and mines. Another image that frequently crops up is that of families. In the poems, families such as mothers and fathers are bought up to feel pride in the men so that they will go and fight. It could be perhaps that the fathers fought in a war too so perhaps the sons feel obliged to as well. This technique makes the reader feel more personal so that is also a reason why they may go and fight. In the poem Wake Up England it brings mothers and fathers into it to make the poem seem more personal to the reader The love of their mothers is strong to command, the fame of their fathers is might to their hand. This suggests that the love their mothers give the soldiers and the strength the dads give them, is what will bring them back to England safely. In this moment in time, nobody knew what the trenches and war zone was like because nobody was yet to experience it. Therefore there were no images of the horror of the war yet and only images of what were to be expected. The last image that crops up frequently is that of God and Religion. The British believe it was not right to fight, but justified it that God was on their side to punish the evil Germans. It is almost an image of God and the Devil, because the British are presented to be pure and good as gold while the Germans were said to be doing bad things and making up lies. In To the troubler of the war the quote we do not with Gods name make wanton play, we are not on such easy terms with heaven which suggests that they do not want to offend God, but for the sake of peace, they must fight and hope he will be on their side. To get people to join the army, many of the poems were called propaganda which is a subliminal message which is trying to promote something, in this case recruitments for the army. The government set up a organisation of writers who would write for the newspapers, poems and literature which would hopefully promote the war. Some of these writers were Thomas Hardy, H G Wells and Rudyard Kipling. People who read these poems were supposed to be inspired to join the war and fight, which must have worked because so many men wanted to join the army recruitment officers couldnt cope with the amounts of people. 100,000 men were needed but 2 million came forward, much because of the propaganda they were witnessing. It wasnt only poems but posters too. As we can see from the one below, a common image used in poems was also the focus on propaganda too. The poster shows the countryside and tries to prove these are the things, soldiers should fight for. In the other poster, it makes war out to be a game as we can see the solders are playing football and cricket instead of fighting again distorting the real view of war. It makes war out to be a game, which can be fun and rewarding and no harm of death at all. This view however was soon to be changed.

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