“Into the valley of Death rode the six hundred.” This quote is saying how the army are riding to their death however nothing is said about the soldiers, I feel the author has made the soldiers look brave; I also think Tennyson has put a capital D on “Death” to personify it which is a technique that Tennyson often uses to glorify war. This next quote just after a gas bomb has dropped and shows just how desperate these men are to stay alive; “An ecstasy of fumbling” the keyword here is “ecstasy”, these men are so frightened of the gas they are desperate to get the masks on to save themselves, so desperate, they are almost clumsy with the masks. From “The Charge…” Tennyson uses a lot of personification to create images in a readers head.
“Into the jaws of Death” and “Into the mouth of Hell”, Tennyson cleverly uses this personification to make the soldiers seem brave. The final point looking at imagery used in “Dulce…” is the description of a soldier after his fellow soldiers “flung” him, “Watch the white eyes writhing in his face.” for me as a reader this creates an image of horror in my mind and by saying how the soldiers “watch” it would also make them scared, and the word “writhing” is also a strong one and sends a shiver down my spine, again increasing the negativity in this poem.
In both these poems imagery is cleverly used but it’s used in different ways to create different effects. In “Dulce…” imagery portrays the soldiers in a negative way using language like, “writhing” and “haunting flares” however, “The Charge…” constantly repeats “rode the six hundred” this makes you think of lots of brave soldiers fighting for their country. In both poems techniques are used in different ways, firstly I will look at “Dulce…” so far this poem has made the war seem like a bad thing and continues to do so using techniques which I will now explain.
The first quote that I’m going to choose is one that I’ve looked at before, “Bent double” this quote is used at the start of the poem and immediately implicated that the soldiers are used like animals therefore saying the war is bad. Another thing that makes this poem negative towards the war is the way Owen writes; for example Owen writes “Drunk” and “Fatigue”, I feel that the way he writes and the language he uses reflects the way the soldiers are feeling.
At the start of stanza two, Owen moves from description to panic, here he uses an ellipsis to give the reader time to make up an image in their head. After describing the panic Owen has a two line stanza which is different to the rest of the poem, “In all my dreams before my helpless sight He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning” I feel this is a personal response from Owen, maybe even a memory, by putting this on its Owen it really draws attention from the reader and by using these words like “choking” I feel that it’s a eye opener for the reader as the reality sinks in of what’s actually happening.
The last point I will make about the way Owen writes is how he often refers to the reader; “You too could pace”, “If you could hear” I feel this is to make the reader guilty So I have looked at the techniques and style of writing used by Owen and I have noticed he uses different techniques compared to Tennyson who uses a lot of personification which I will now look at. Firstly I will look at personification used in “The Charge…” Tennyson personifies evil words which makes them seem more real; “Death”, “Hell” He does this to create more fear in the poem and make the soldiers look braver. Tennyson also uses alliteration, “Shot and shell”, “Shatter’d and Sunder’d” I feel that this is used to speed up the poem and glorify the men.
Another line I noticed in “The Charge…” was the following; “Not the six hundred” It’s on its own which means that Tennyson wanted it to seem more important and considering he has spent most of the poem saying;”Rode the Six hundred” It is a complete contrast to before and obviously means soldiers have died but he makes this look like a positive thing; “When can their glory fade?” He is saying they died as heroes and describes was as positive however as Tennyson never went to war he has no write to say this. So after looking at movement, imagery and techniques used in these poems I think “Dulce” is looking at war in a negative way even by looking at the title “Dulce et decorum est” it’s saying how sweet and fitting it is, obviously sarcastic. “The Charge…” however is looking at the war positively but I feel the main reason for this is because Tennyson had never been in the war meaning he didn’t know what it was like.