19th October 2018

Wilfred Owen Essay

In the poem ” Exposure” written by Wilfred Owen, he opened his lines by saying “The merciless iced east winds that knive us.” By Owens saying this, he uses a personification by giving the wind human qualities. By him describing wind as “merciless” meaning to have no mercy it becomes a personification. I believe by him saying this he is trying to show that the wind is so miserable, that it actually causing physical pain towards the soldiers. I know this because he uses the words “iced winds that knife us.” This states that the wind is so icy cold that when it blows, it actually causing physical pain to them. This shows how bad war must have been for them not only mentally but physically.  

The author also uses another personification to describe another sentence which is ‘Pale flakes with fingering stealth come feeling for our faces.’ By him saying this he is trying to describe the snow on the faces of the soldiers, as they fall cautiously onto the faces of the soldiers which show the conditions that the soldiers had to fight in. He describes it in such a way that you can visualize the snowflakes fingering the face as they fall cautiously on to there faces. But the way he described it was like the snow was coming for there faces. In a way like how the other soldiers were coming for them. So as well as battling their enemies around them they were also battling the rough weather conditions.

In the poem ‘Anthem For Doomed Youth’ written by Wilfred Owen, he opened the lines by saying “What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?” In saying this he uses a simile as he describes the people who died in war as cattle. By Owen using a simile, I believe he is trying to say that the ‘passing-bells’ which are the bells that aafter someone’s death to announce the death to the world. With saying this I believe he is trying to say that the bells are for the people who died in the war. But by him referring to the people as cattle, it represents a mass amount of people who had died from war.  As there are so many people who lost their lives during the war and there are a lot of cattle in herds.  

The author uses a personification and emotive language to describe another sentence which was, ‘Demented choirs of wailing shells.’ I believe by him using these techniques he is trying to say that the choir is so mad about the deaths caused by war they are singing so loud that they sound like wailing shells. The sound of the shells from the bullets wailing through the sky as people get shot at. This personification relates to the war to explain how the choirs sang in a moment of pain to express how they were feeling about the situation.

Both ‘Exposure’ and ‘Anthem For Doomed Youth’ both captured the audience by they way Wilfred Owen described the severe conditions in ‘Exposure” that the men that had to fight and the way that it affected them. As Wilfred Owen gave many of them personifications to describe them as a human quality. To show what it was really like for them in the situation.  In ‘Anthem For Doomed Youth’ used many language features to describe the mourning at the funeral, for the hundreds who died in the war. By him using Personifications and similes and emotive language it really set the scene by giving so much more to a sentence by referring cattle as the people who died from the war it  gave the sentence a who new factor.

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