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Describe at least one challenge faced by a character or individual in the written text. Explain how this challenge helped you to understand the character or individual.

All Quiet on the Western Front (AQWF) by Erich Maria Remarque, is a novel about Paul Bäumer who is an 18-year-old German student who enlisted in the great war straight out of school with his classmates. Kantorek who was their school teacher had been encouraging them to enlist all year through the propaganda created by the German Government. Paul and his classmates that later became his comrades were affected mentally and physically by the horror of warfare. A challenge that Paul faced was when he came back home to Germany for leave and how he felt out of place and different to the rest of society this helps us to understand how tremendously the young soldiers were affected by the war.
‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ was written as an anti-war book and then later banned in 1930 by the German government because the NAZI party believed it was unpatriotic and made Germany look weak. AQWF is written about Remarque’s own experiences in the war and that was what inspired him to write about the horror of war.
When Paul comes home he realises that he will never be the same person that he was before the war. He has become desensitized to things that would have affected him before the war, like losing his friends in battle which has just become a daily occurrence. The young men were tremendously affected by the war to the point where they would rather die in battle than have to face their family and old life back home. ‘I should have never come home. Out there I was indifferent and a lot of the time I was completely without hope. I can never be like that again.’ This quote is said by Paul and is about how he feels completely isolated from society and how he will never be able to return to his old life, his clothes, books, bedroom and drawings no longer bring him any happiness and joy at all. Remarque uses Paul’s visit home to highlight how drastically the war affected everyone involved especially the young soldiers.

At the age of 18, you haven’t had any real-life experience. You are fresh out of school and want to experience the world and learn lots of new things but these young men enlisted without any knowledge of the real world, other than what they had been taught in school. The younger soldiers had left school and went straight to war they didn’t have jobs or children or wives to come back to whereas the older soldiers did they could return home from war and try to forget all the traumatic and horrific memories. School did not prepare the soldiers for what was going to happen during the war exam results meant nothing it’s almost like they wasted all the years at school to just be killed in the war. ‘You believe in a miracle, but it really just comes down to loaves of bread’ This quote is by Paul and he is saying you can hope for a miracle to happen all you like but bread loaves is the best it gets. Remarque does this to show how useless school is to the soldiers and it helps us to understand how Paul and the other soldiers felt during the war and how they didn’t know what would happen to them if and when they got home, society would be a completely different place.

When Paul returns home he feels completely alienated from society, like he no longer fits in. An example of this is when Paul’s father wants to take him out to meet all his friends and wants him to wear his uniform to show off his son, but Paul refuses. This shows that Paul doesn’t want to wear his uniform because his father and his friends believe war is this big great and glorious thing when really they have never experienced it so they believe the propaganda and everything the government says about the war. Remarque does this to truly help us understand the detachment Paul felt when he came back home on leave and how he has become desensitized and dehumanised because of the war. Warfare has left a mark on all those involved which is not only physical but also physiological.

‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ is still relevant in today’s society because it helps educate people on the horrors of war. It shows how much people are affected mentally and physically by war.

In conclusion ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ by Erich Maria Remarque is an anti-war novel written to highlight the horrors of war. A challenge Paul faced was when he returned home to Germany on leave, this helped us to understand the horror of war and how alienated Paul felt from the rest of society. This novel remarque highlights the horror of war and the wastefulness of war, these are all still very relevant in today’s society to help educate people about what actually happens in war to prevent a world war 3.

Kiā ora and great to see you using Studyit.
You establish both parts of the question beautifully in the introduction.
Your use of evidence is excellent, specific and thoughtful and you are showing insight in the comments you make. The insight into the character of Paul is inferred.
Well done.
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