Compare and Contrast

The film “They Shall Not Grow Old” and the two written texts “All Quiet on the Western Front” and “Soldiers Home”, all share similar ideas in common. The two main ideas shared throughout these three accounts are the issues the soldiers faced returning to their old lives and people not understanding the reality of war and not wanting to talk about it.

In all three of these accounts, the soldiers faced similar problems when they returned to their old lives. In “All Quiet on the Western Front”, Paul Baummer talks about feeling like he has changed so much from the war that his old life feels like a part of his past he can never return to. In “Soldier’s Home”, Harrold Krebs talks about a similar issue. Even though his view on the war was more positive, he still found it hard to return to his old life is a similar way Baummer did. In the film “They Shall Not Grow Old”, one soldier talks about how it was hard to go back to his old life. He found it hard to move on and have people forget about all the horrible things he had to go through. In all three of these accounts, the war has had so much influence in the development of their lives that they found their old life impossible to get back too.

Another similarity between the three accounts is that they said they couldn’t talk to people about what actually happened in the war. In “All Quiet on the Western Front”, Paul Baummer prefers to not talk about the war at all because he finds that people have their own ideas of war that are not accurate and romanticise the idea of war. In “Soldier’s Home”, Harrold Krebs lies about what happened in the war because he found all the people disinterested in the actual stories he had to tell. In the film “They Shall Not Grow Old”, one soldier talks about how they couldn’t truthfully talk about the war with people who were not in it because they didn’t fully understand it. He said that the only people you could freely talk about the war and have them understand was to talk to another soldier who was in the war. The people who did not experience the war didn’t understand the horrors the soldiers had to go through which made it hard for the soldiers to talk to people about it.

These three pieces provide the reader with a perspective on WW1 and all the struggles the soldiers had to deal with both in the war, and returning from it.

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