every Quiet ~ above the west Front Themes The key themes of all Quiet top top the western Front incorporate individual vs. Machine, friendship, and also alienation and loneliness.

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Individual vs. Machine: Paul at first glorifies war yet becomes horrified through the impersonal technological forces behind contemporary warfare.Friendship: Many the Paul"s friend enlist v him, and their deaths an outcome in Paul"s feeling more and an ext lonely together the war continues.Alienation and loneliness: The harrowing accident of war leave Paul isolated, as perform the civilians that cannot recognize his pain as soon as the battle is over.
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last Updated on April 9, 2020, by katifund.org Editorial. Native Count: 655

Individual vs. Machine

The patriotism of battle is a point of the past, Remarque suggests, as the young recruits quickly learn around the fact of trench warfare. Paul Baumer, fresh from institution at the start of the novel, is sent out after skimpy however brutal simple training come the trenches in France. He quickly learns the living or dying has tiny to do with one"s prowess as a soldier but much more as a conditioned reflex. Due to the fact that the Allies outgunned the Axis in artillery and also machinery, the German youth take it refuge in trenches the were no complement for the type of warfare waged. As an ext and an ext of his comrades space killed, Baumer sees the death originates from afar in the pho shells and also the bombs, and as the trenches market less and less refuge native the other side"s brand-new tanks and also airplanes and its better guns, survive becomes little an ext than a chance.


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Thus, the theme of All Quiet on the western Front is the individual"s struggle against forces beyond his control: technology, institutions, politics, society conventions, disease, and death. The soldiers become automata, do the efforts to prevent death an ext than in reality fighting. Rapid changes of scene take it the leader to the front—sheltering indigenous shell-fire in a cemetery, under gas attack, behind the lines—on leave to a Germany the cannot conceive of life in ~ the front, into call with Russian POWs, and also to the hospital, wherein the results of war are amongst the severest and also clearest. The increasingly condensed final chapters present the young German troops beat in the field, plainly unable to win in the challenge of livelier and better fed allied troops, and also Baumer dies before the yes, really armistice. His death in the end, the writer seems come say, is not even worth reporting.

The environment of death, the callousness the Muller"s inquiry for Kemmerich"s boots, the theft that his watch, and the eagerness of a soldier to exchange cigarettes for morphine to assist a dice soldier include to the template of the absurdity of contemporary existence, where man is compelled to combat personal mechanistic forces.


The one element that maintain its optimistic value in the novel is friendship between the comrades. A difference in generation developed, and also ties between the young soldiers solidified. Carl Zuckmayer, a playwright and also friend that Remarque, write in A part of Myself, "The heroic gestures that the volunteer was barred to Erich Maria Remarque and his age group; they had actually to sweat the end their typical time in school and also then it is in unwillingly drafted, drilled, and harassed, and also they entered the ar without illusions, because that they had actually some inkling the the horrors the awaited lock there. For us the brief training period was a strenuous but also an funny transition, a an excellent joke, much as if we were playing components in a very realistic army comedy."

Alienation and Loneliness

Paul retreats indigenous civilian life right into the isolated people of the soldier. Adhering to his leave, that grieves end his second departure come the front, i m sorry separates the from his mother. He is sad to shed his friends. In the exact same vein, the wistful, elegiac mood stubborn in the novel in the allusions come the shed generation. Paul accepts the reality that his generation is burned out and also emotionally stifled. During his safety duty, that sees men scurry in terror in a rat-infested trench together they hide beside cadavers of their comrades. Chapter 12, the last, is a compelling gift cry the abandonment. Paul consciousness his generation together "weary, broken, charred out, rootless, and without hope." versus a red rowan tree, the sees nature with new, objective eyes. "I to be so alone," he concludes, doing not have a will certainly to live.

When Baumer returns home on leave, he is can not to determine with memory of his youth nor know the patriotic enthusiasm of the larger generation. The shed generation essentially has the students whose youth is cut short and also ruined.

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critical Updated on may 5, 2015, by katifund.org Editorial. Word Count: 232

In all Quiet ~ above the western Front, two themes that overcome the plot and complement each various other are war and also the "rites that passage." In literature, war frequently becomes the proving ground on i m sorry a youth is initiated right into one of the rites of i — as instances, Crane"s The Red badge of vessel (1895) and also Hemingway"s A taking leave to arms (1929). Paul Baumer candidly relates his very own initiation right into war and, as common of rites that passage, that gains expertise from his experiences. He claims that when he and also his twenty classmates enlisted lock "were tho crammed complete of vague ideas which provided to life, and to the battle also, an ideal practically romantic character"; ideals, of course, that room shattered by war"s brutality together Baumer city hall his classmates and comrades shed arms, legs, faces, sanity, and lives. Also when house on leaving from the front, he poignantly realizes the he is isolated and also alienated native his family and also townspeople who can neither recognize what he has experienced no one comprehend how his war experiences have changed him; indeed, the is practically eager to return to the front wherein his comrades are: "I belong come them and they come me, us all re-publishing the exact same fear and also the very same life." In a larger sense, too, Baumer"s rites that initiation mirror the rites of his classmates and friends who share the very same experiences, fears, and also life.