From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
All Quiet on the Western Front

All Quiet on the Western Front


by Erich Maria Remarque

All Quiet on the Western Front Theme of Sacrifice

When you break down the word "sacrifice," the first part, "sacr," means sacred or holy. Sacrifice implies a set of beliefs for which one is willing to give something up to achieve. In All Quiet on the Western Front, the men sacrifice everything for nothing. They give up their lives for a set of ideals that are either incomprehensible or false. The fact that they sacrifice for unknown reasons gives rise to great and widespread tension.

Questions About Sacrifice

  1. For what are the soldiers sacrificing their lives?
  2. Do we see examples of different kinds of sacrifice in this novel? If so, what examples do we see?
  3. How do the soldiers justify the sacrifices they make?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

The soldiers do not know why they are sacrificing their lives.

The soldiers give up their lives for one another.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...