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1210 words - 5 pages

All Quiet On The Western Front, written by Erich Maria Remarque, takes place in France during World War I. Paul Baumer, the narrator, was a young man who was fighting for his country, Germany. Paul was only 18 years old when the book first begins. Remarque starts the story with Paul and all of the soldiers in his company just finished with heavy front line fighting against the English and the French. He goes on in the story to explain the life of a soldier in World War I. Sometimes it was scary, funny, sad, boring, dirty, upsetting, life-threatening, but throughout ones company there was a special togetherness between the men in that company. Paul was a young man just out of school when he enlisted to fight for "the Fatherland," Germany. One of his good childhood friends, Franz Kemmerich, volunteers with him to become a soldier and becomes Paul's first experience with death when he dies from a leg amputation early in the war. Paul sat by him and watched him slowly pass away and realizes that war is real and brutal. Paul finds comfort with the other men in his company including Albert Kropp, Muller, and Tjaden; but the most important fellow soldier was Kat. He was a veteran soldier who knew how to survive in a war and with loss. He gave lots of advice and support to Paul during these rough times. The setting of this story takes place in France and Germany during the years 1916-1918. Remarque, the author was a veteran soldier in World War I, and he had experienced all of what Paul goes through. He vividly illustrates life in the trenches. I could picture the dirt, the mud, the earth, the rats. I could imagine the shells going over my head missing my trench by inches, and he bullets whistling by my ears and just missing me. He explains how you may have long days off with no fighting and you have plenty of time on your hands to where the next day you get no sleep and are shooting for hours at a time. Both the fighting and the down time help these men create a camaraderie that only they understand between each other. This bond between them comes about because of many different reasons. One of these reasons is because they are fighting on the same "team" against an enemy (the French and English). And if they want to accomplish their goals they have to depend on each other to do so. They are a team, a family, a company and if one of them makes a mistake it can effect everyone. Another reason for their bonding is they are all caught in the same nightmare of war. For Instance Corporal Himmelstoss is a drill instructor who bullies soldiers with his power, and makes their life miserable. Their hatred for him helps them bond together. The way this war was fought was frustrating and senseless. Armies would kill and wound hundreds often gaining literally inches of land. It seemed no one knew the point of each battle, and their was no leadership by either side. To distract themselves from the ordeals they often...

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