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How Should War Be Depicted in Literature and Other Art Forms

  • Date Submitted: 09/01/2010 08:08 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 65.5 
  • Words: 338
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Depicting war through means of literature and other forms of art are not aimed to review the facts of war, but to show how they were portrayed by artists on either side of the front line and also to indicate the difficulties that were involved.

Wars are depicted through art in various forms such as paintings, sculptures and many, many more.   But why use art and even more important, how should it be depicted through these various art forms?   Is it the community who determines how it should be depicted, or the individual?

Each artist, whether directly or indirectly involved in a war, depicted it differently.   Some were pro-war, and others...anti-war.   But despite this, they drew, wrote and sculpted certain or specific events of war.   These art forms that were created either took on the cruel brutality of war by painting pictures of the hundreds or even thousands of bodies that laid on the battlefields and with this, they portrayed the harshness of war.   Some of the artists made use of satire, so that the painful side of war can be ignored, or better said: to be covered up by means of using comedy.

Remarque, an artist who were directly involved in World War 1, had a specific reason to title her book All Quiet on the Western Front.   See, soldiers were ‘brain washed’ so that they would enlist.   They were told that it is honourable, brave and manly to go and fight for one’s country, but as these men fought on the front, it became clear to them that the front wasn’t that quiet after all.   Ironic, isn’t it?

Clearly Remarque depicted the brutality and harshness of war.

But with all said and done, I still haven’t determined how exactly war should be depicted through literature and other forms of art.   However, two things are certain.   First, everyone’s perception of war is depicted differently and lastly, the pen is and will always be more powerful than the sword.


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