All Quiet On The Western Front

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate September 2001

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Page 2-"Ten cigars 20 cigarettes and two quids of tobacco per man; now that is decent. I have exchanged my chewing tobacco for with Katczinsky for his cigarettes which means i have forty all together. That's enough for a day." I feel that all quiet on the western front is a very emotional book. Erich Maria Remarque stresses many unique motifs a few very important ones that I caught while I was reading are the recurrence of boots and tobacco. With every thing going on around them Paul and his buddies have been desensitized to war and violence, or at least that is what it looks like on the outside.

okay now over the years I have learned through TV, literature, and eye witness that people smoke when they get scared or nervous. So, when one man has 40 cigarettes and 10 cigars and that's only enough for one day he must be pretty darned nervous about something (in this case the horrible war that was going on).

The tobacco comes into play again when some of the Russian prisoners herd against a fence and beg for cigarette butts now earlier in the chapter it goes on about how hungry the Russian prisoners were and they were begging for cigarette butts and not food. This struck me because the people back then were unaware of the addictive characteristics of tobacco. Even though their tobacco addictions were so strong that as starving as they were they would rather beg for cigarettes than for food.

Other smarter Russians at the Prisoner Of War (POW) camp traded their must prized possessions, their boots for a few loaves of bread or maybe a small, tough ham sausage. In this passage POW's Page 16- "Muller reappears with a pair of airman's boots" then Paul thinks,

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