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Essay On World War 1. Views On The War Prior To Wwi And After Wwi. Comparing And Contrasting Such Authors As Von Vernhardi, Owen,Sassoon And Remarque.

1130 words - 5 pages

In modern times, the western world has been plagued with war. However, as some people might see it as an atrocity, others might think quite the opposite; that war is heroic, noble, and even necessary. The 1st world war (1914-18) was the first global warfare in which many different views of the event were clearly expressed by people who had their own opinions and experiences about the subject. In the following paragraphs, the views in pre and post-war writings will be compared and contrasted to finally show that there is indeed a difference between the two.Feelings of patriotism and pride were omnipresent before the war eventually broke out in October of 1914. To support the war was to be, as Henry Massis said, part of a noble cause that exceeded one's own benefit. It was a sacrifice to your country, surely one of the biggest human virtues possible. What could be better than to become a martyr for a just cause? Some even called it a necessary cause. German general Von Bernhardi truly believed that war was absolutely vital to human survival. He claimed that the end of war would be an:" unhealthy development [...], which excludes every advancement of the race, and therefore all real civilization." Struggle is a part of nature, and only the fittest will, as they rightfully should, survive. War is only acknowledging what he calls human nature. General Von Treitshke, on his part, offered an aesthetic view of war. War was beautiful, and so is letting go of any personal needs to cater to the bigger, more important state of one's country. Someone who did not understand this, in his opinion, obviously failed to understand the superiority and braveness of the Aryan race. He argues that the dream of an everlasting peace is complete hogwash, and, similar to Bernhardi, believed that the end of war came hand in hand with the end of progression. As hard as it is to believe any of these sometimes unfounded arguments, mainly that the Aryan race is superior, the people of Europe seemed to be united in the idea that war was indeed a, if not good, great thing.No war of such a caliber had been fought since Napoleon's day and no one suspected the ultimate horrors of modern warfare. The overwhelming majority of Europeans never experienced war, and imagined it would be an offensive battle that would be fought on favorable ground, in which there would be no casualties. Their views were extremely romanticized. The image of the brave soldier dressed in a beautiful uniform riding with his sword on his reliable horse was still widely seen as what was going to happen. Basically, people were happy. Author Roland Doregelès, recalling his personal experience in France at the outbreak of war, says that pride was felt among everyone. It did not matter how old they were, what political party they approved, or how much money was in their pocket, for once, everyone was only labeled as French, and the sound of resonating cheers and the waving of the red, white and blue flag...

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