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War Poetry Comparative Essay The First World War Changed the way Some People Thought about War and Patriotism Introduction The First World War was probably the occurrence that has had the most profound effect on peoples views on the principles of war and patriotism Before the War there was a glamorous even attractive idea of war portrayed by the government this view was accepted by the public hence the massive amounts of voluntary enlistment during the first few months of the War With the introduction of photographic technology the traditional idea of war and death for your country was shattered it was revealed to a quite unprepared public that they were sending their boys out into a hell of mud death and inhuman suffering that could reduce the most determined of soldiers to a state of total incompetence both mentally and physically A war is no longer the clashing of individuals in more or less single combat it is the clashing of governments the enemy is not the man that you kill with your bayonet it is the state responsible for placing him in the path of that thrust Unlike medieval battles where champions of the armies could often settle disputes and the most fierce battles were fought either by volunteers or by those who owe allegiance to one king or another in the First World War there was very little personal loyalty to the generals or parliament there was only a certain feeling that it was important to do your bit for the war effort It wasnt until the wounded and shell shocked victims of global conflict started pouring into Britain in their thousands that the public feelings of national pride began to ebb and conscription was introduced This change of opinion was combated with censorship secrecy and massaged figures in the press the public were led to believe that the War was not as horrific as they may
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