All Quiet on the Western Front

The Greatest Loss of All: Soldiers’ Loss of Themselves in All Quiet on the Western Front 11th Grade

War is widely regarded as a time of devastation, death, and destruction. Many times, the brave souls that go nobly into war come out completely different, scarred and changed by the horrific events they have witnessed, if they survive. In All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque, Paul Baumer and his comrades experience just this, being degraded less than human, and disrupting connections to life at home, both major things almost every soldier loses to the battle. Throughout the war, the soldiers on the front experience extremely trying situations, causing them to fight for basic necessities, rely on primitive instincts, and become separated from normal life, adding to the destruction they face when fighting in the war.

Throughout the novel, the men on the front are constantly forced to battle for even the most fundamental of essentials, causing them to be reduced to below humans. The soldiers do not have everything a normal human wants or needs during a normal course of time, like basic necessities, and this causes them to be dehumanized. An example of this is when Paul recounts the scene of the German camp, depicting how little food there is to feed such a big army: “Everything gets eaten, notwithstanding, and if...

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