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All Quiet on the Western Front

All Quiet on the Western Front

by Erich Maria Remarque

All Quiet on the Western Front Themes

Little Words, Big Ideas

Identity

"Who am I?" is the most aggressively confronted question in All Quiet on the Western Front. Our narrator discovers his own identity as he grows from a naïve youth to a wizened front line fight...

Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

In the world of All Quiet on the Western Front, we are exposed to the dreams of men who endure months upon months of trench warfare. Conditions are abysmal and mass death is a frequent occurrence....

Warfare

All Quiet on the Western Front displays all of the angst central to any story about war, but it also exposes the horrors of a new kind of war, one that allows for mass death. Machine guns had never...

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...

Patriotism

Patriotism is the love of one's country over all things. None of the young soldiers in All Quiet on the Western Front are painted as patriots. Not ever. Instead they are instruments of elected or a...

Revenge

Transgressions are made aplenty in All Quiet on the Western Front, usually in the form of an officer or teacher abusing the trust of younger soldiers or students. Himmelstoss the postman-turned-cru...

Mortality

The frailty and value of life is a giant theme in All Quiet on the Western Front. The author highlights the shallow attitude of observers who think of soldiers as toys that can be lost and easily r...

Innocence

Innocence is almost an enemy in All Quiet on the Western Front – a soldier must get rid of it right away if he wants to survive. Our narrator learns to lose his innocence quickly, mostly by o...

Home

Paul's definition of "home" changes throughout the course of All Quiet on the Western Front. At the beginning, Paul longs for home – his old home, the one where he grew up. Clean sheets. Mom'...

Primitiveness

Throughout the course of All Quiet on the Western Front, we watch as soldiers fight to both preserve their humanity and to suppress their human instincts. Humanness allows them to form strong bonds...

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