All Quiet on the Western Front

The Role of Propaganda in All Quiet on the Western Front College

World War I was a watershed event in world history. Besides being a war on such a massive scale with many casualties involving three major empires, it brought up many questions concerning the role of the nation state and the meaning of war. The soldiers that came out of World War I alive were often cynical and anti-society. Many art movements were created against the history of the war including Dada, surrealism and the Lost Generation. All Quiet on the Western Front joins Johnny Got His Gun and A Farewell to Arms as the novels which depicted World War I in a decidedly non-romantic light. Of the major antiwar books, All Quiet on the Western Front is rather unique in the ways that it places itself in direct discourse with war propaganda. This essay will discuss the ways that Remarque depicts pro-war propaganda in order to make the war that much more monstrous.

Erich Maria Remarque was conscripted into the German army at the age of 18 and his experiences in the trenches of the Western Front formed the experiential basis for his novel All Quiet on the Western Front. Even though WWII resulted in more death, the wholesale slaughter that characterized WWI was even more horrific for various reasons including the use of the machine gun...

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