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World at War

Victory International

December 7th 2011


A closer examination of life in the trenches on the Western Front

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“War is a series of catastrophes that results in a victory� -Georges Clemenceau



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Inspiring Quote

Exclusive Interview

Exclusive Interview

Song & Analysis

Where I’m From Poem

Lest We Forget



~ Life on the Western Front ~ rowing up in the kind small town of IIsenburg, Paul labored on his parent’s large farm on the east side of town. Now, Paul Baumer is one of the many young and hardworking soldiers fighting for the Germans in the First World War against the French. One by one these brave young soldiers have been painfully annihilated in the cold, muddy trenches on the western front. Paul has been very fortunate enough to still be alive. Back home, family and friends pray for his safe return. As a nineteen-year-old, Paul was did not choose to join the army, he was forced to by the strict German Government. Before he joined the army, Paul provisioned his family with most of their food and income. Now the Baumer family struggles to bring in enough income and food for the family because Paul has been fighting on the front. Today we will sit with Paul himself, and discuss his experiences in the war and his family back home. Q: “Before you joined the army, what was life like in your hometown of IIsenburg?” “As a child I was always one of the most athletic kids in my grade. Life was great out on the farm. During the summer it was full of football and farming, and by the winter we played shinny on the frozen ponds. I lived a very peaceful life. Everyone knew everyone, and it was the quintessential place to grow up in. I have really missed those memorable days with friends and family, but I have made strong bonds with fellow soldiers, though I do wish to return back home someday.” Q: Recently you have been talking a lot about family and friends back at home, how has joining the army affected your relationship with them? “Yes. Joining the army has deeply impacted my relationship with my family. I do really miss my mother, father and all my siblings at home. Being the eldest of six siblings, I used to help my father a lot on the farm. Now that I have left, my younger brother, Miroslav, who will be 15 at the end of the month, will have to take on my role of taking care of the family.” Q: About a week ago from now a friend of yours, who has been terribly sick and unwell past away. Now that you have experienced one of your fellow soldiers die, what does this make you feel about death? “Like a lot people, I would like a long life, but being in the army you never know what day will be your last. Like most my age I am scared of death, but I know that I have a duty, and that is to fight for my country.”

Q: If you had not been forced to join the army, what you have liked to take on as a career? “Growing up, I was very interested in the beauty and scenery of our farm. I always wanted to become an artist and that dream has still not cleared my mind. When I was nine, I was privileged enough to have my own pencil and drawing book. After school, I used to sit in my favorite spot down by the bank because of its breath-taking views and interesting wildlife. I would draw for an hour or two, and then I was back to my regular life on the farm.” Q: Explain to us your relationship with Corporal Himmelstone. Why do you see him as the “sickest bastard in the whole barrack”? “By many, Corporal Himmelstone has earned himself a cruel and torturous reputation. Many also dislike Corporal because of his agonizing workouts and brutal punishments. This one time, he made me clean another corporal’s mess with a toothbrush. Even though he is mean and brutal, he is my corporal and I must obey his every command.”

German soldier Paul Baumber in his uniform at age 19

CivilWAR Guns ‘n’ Roses

Look at your young men fighting Look at your women crying Look at your young men dying The way they’ve always done before Look at the hate we’re breeding Look at the fear we’re feeding Look at the lives we’re leading The way we’ve always done before My hands are tied The billions shift from side to side And the wars go on with brainwashed pride For the love of god and our human rights 6


ith brutal visions of blood and gore, the song Civil War by guns n’ rose observes the negative aspects of war. For example, in the fourth verse of the song guns ‘n roses writes, “And the wars go on with brainwashed pride, for the love of God and our human rights.” Later in the song they write, “But still the wars go on and the years go by, with no love of God or human rights” I think what Axl Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan are trying to convey in this song is that war doesn’t solve anything. More specifically, I think that the soldiers have been brainwashed by their government to fight their wars for them, telling them that it is for their country. Furthermore, their message is war will not bring peace and harmony between countries it will only bring more tragic, innocent deaths and chaos around the world. Guns n’ Roses have illustrate an abundance of sophisticated and poetic language into this song. For example, “Look at the hate we’re breeding.” What I think guns n’ roses have portrayed here is they have used personification to describe hate in war. More specifically, they are giving life to the word hate, suggesting that we breed it. By this I mean that in this context we are breeding hate by causing and fighting in wars. We are also breeding it by making it and more of an issue. That is one example, however there are many more. Another example is, “Look at the fear we’re feeding” What I think that Guns and Roses are portraying here is that fear is this small feeling and we are feeding it, and making it stronger and more threatening. By this I mean that we are feeding fear, making it a bigger and frightful problem. Though Guns n’ Roses use a lot of personification to express their message they also use other poetic device. An example of that would be, “Look at the lives we’re leading.” This is an example of alliteration. What I think Guns and Roses have done here is they have used alliteration to emphasize that one line. What I think the guns n roses wanted to emphasize in this line is that the government leading young men’s lives into a life of war and bloodshed. By this I mean that the government is leading men and women into a life of misery and for other people to fight their war. I chose this song because it connected to the theme and meaning of my novel. In a corresponding way, my novel, All Quiet on the Western Front, is a sad, unpredictable and action-packed book about war. This relates to the meaning and theme of the song as well. The song talks about how war has no benefits to society. Why not example from song here. In the book Erich Remarque writes, “The wisest were just the poor and simple people. They knew the war to be a misfortune, whereas people who were better off were beside themselves with joy, though they should have been much better able to judge what the consequences would be.” What Erich was trying to convey in this quote, is that the poor and unfortunate citizens knew the destruction and consequences of war because they have seen and experienced it, while the wealthy and fortunate people do not understand these destructive consequences. There are many quotes from the song that suggest it is an anti-war song, though I find this to be the quintessential line of this song, “Look at your men dying, the way they have always done before.” What I think the artist means in this phrase is, like I said before is that war does not get anyone anywhere. All war cause is sorrow and despair to family and friend of victims who were killed by these catastrophic happenings and tension and hatred around the world.

“The great war of 1914 was presumed to be the war to end all wars, though it only sparked a series of unfortunate events.� - Sehej Shergill


Lest We Forget Sehej Shergill


total of ten million soldiers killed, and a total of thirty-five million military personnel’s and civilians who perished in total, World War I was one of the most destructive wars of all time. With brutal visual images of blood and slaughter, All Quiet on the Western Front, is an enthralling novel about the rugged lives of young soldiers in combat, and their struggles on the western front. Although it may be difficult for the average grade-eight student to read, All Quiet on the Western Front is a novel that captivates you with its rich and sophisticated vocabulary. Throughout the book there is constant action in the trenches and on the battlefields, which is appealing to reluctant male readers. Ironically enough, this book compliments the current curricular outcomes of grade eight language arts. With a storyline that encourages reluctant male readers to read, rich and sophisticated vocabulary that pulls the reader in and a connection to other grade-eight curricular outcomes, my captivating novel should be an addition to the grade-eight language arts curriculum. Published in December of 1928, All Quiet on the Western Front sold 2.5 million copies worldwide in twenty-five different languages in the first 18 months on the shelves. While the majority of modern novels are all wrapped up in mystical worlds and mythical characters, All Quiet on the Western Front explores the historical fiction genre using rich and sophisticated language. Not only is the book a historical thriller, it is also seen as a classic. Some qualities that define a classic novel is that it stands the test of time. Furthermore, a classic includes an artistic quality and covers strong themes such as life and death. The great war of 1914 was presumed to be the war to end all wars, though it only sparked a series of unfortunate events. And although the misery and torture has ended, Remarque’s evocation of the horrors of modern warfare has lost none of its force, as quoted in a review by The Times newspaper.

In order to piece together the present you must first understand the events of the past. My novel relates to the concept of worldview, which is key to the current grade 8 Social Studies curriculum. How we live today, how our societies operate all relate to particular worldviews. The origin of our modern day democratic society lies in our history. Should we not prioritize important studies of the past such as World War I, which altered global history substantially? And if it were not for the many allies fighting for their countries rights in this deadly war, would we be living the peaceful and fortunate life we do now? This statement clearly explains the importance this novel has in the current grade 8 curriculum.

You have probably heard, or noticed, that typically females read more than males. Although you may think this is a stereotype, an unscientific experiment conducted by a British author named Ian McEwan suggests this stereotype is fact. He and his son wandered into the lunchtime crowds at a London park, and began handing out free books. Within a few minutes they had handed out 30 novels, 25 of which were garnered by women and only five to males. This may be a result of the novels that are currently being produced. Series such as Twilight, The Vampire Diaries and Gossip Girl are all book sequences that are mainly directed at females. Unlike most novels, All Quiet on the Western Front is a classic that appeals to most, if not all male audiences. Composed in the genre of historical fiction, All Quiet on the Western Front escapes the mythical publications of fantasy and puts into context the factual accounts of World War 1. 10

With its breathtaking action and astonishing literature, All Quiet on the Western Front possesses the quintessential traits of a good novel. Not only was Remarque able to write with such profound details and descriptive language, he was able to compose a book that will last throughout the ages. I believe that, because of its staggering literature, relation to current grade 8 social studies curricular outcomes and a chronicle storyline that will appeal to all male audiences, All Quiet on the Western Front should be an addition to the grade eight social studies curriculum. In Remarque’s words, this book was intended neither as an accusation nor as a confession, but just simply as an attempt to give an account of a generation that was destroyed by the war – even those of it who survived the shelling.

Where I’m From Sehej Shergill I am from the golden sea of wavering wheat Dancing from side to side in the gentle wind To the pungent stench of the chicken coupe I’m from the filling family feasts of fresh potatoes, ham and warm brotchen bread To the meager rations of packaged food I am from the terrorizing thoughts of perishing in battle To losing a close friend in the troublesome trenches on the western front I am from praying that I do not lose another in combat And hoping I will not be next I am the from the blissful and peaceful scenery of rivers and wildlife To the bloodshed battlefields on the western front I am from the IIsenburg community church every Sunday To sitting on the end of my hay bed, praying to see another day I am from the pleasant tweeting of birds in the morning To the deafening sound of artillery Constantly ringing in my ears I am from the tranquil stream that passes through our farm To the rivers of blood that run through the killing fields

The hunger games 23 . 3 . 12


20 -Sehej Final Magazine Project  

A closer examination of life in the trenches on the Western Front 16.99$ CAN 14.99$ US December 7th 2011 Victory International -Georges Clem...

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