4b6625d01fe09030e91aaffe282974eefcb4.pdf - All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque E rich Maria Remarque the son of a bookbinder was born

4b6625d01fe09030e91aaffe282974eefcb4.pdf - All Quiet on the...

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All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque E rich Maria Remarque, the son of a book- binder, was born in Germany in 1898. A bright and perceptive student with strong interests in music, art, and literature, Remarque decided to pursue a teaching career. But in 1916, before he could complete his training, Remarque was drafted into the German army along with other fellow students. He served in a sapper'unit, which was responsible for fortifying positions be- hind the front, until he was wounded by an ar- tillery attack in July 1917. His experiences at the front and the antiwar sentiment that they pro- duced in him form the central core of his most famous novel, AH Quiet on the Western Front. Events in History at the Time the Novel Takes Place The outbreak of war. In reaction to Austria's harsh attempts to control Serbian commerce, on June 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary was assassinated by a Serbian nationalist ia Sarajevo. As the Austrian govern- ment plotted a suitable retribution against the Serbs, the effect on Russia was taken into con- sideration. Because Russia was closely allied with Serbia, Austrian officials worried that the slight- est aggression against the Serbs would result in Russian involvement. As a precaution, Austria sought support from Germany, its most power- ful ally. Kaiser Wilhelm II immediately vouched for Germany's assistance, telling the Austrian powers that his nation would support whatever action the Austrian government might take. THE LITERARY WORK A novel set during World War I on Germany's •Western: front; published jn;l 929, : i"\ -": SYNOPSIS ;%v V/;- : :A young infantry'soldier describes the horrible realities of World War t's trench warfare and the drastic consequences of the war upon his generation. , : : 'V " On July 23, 1914, the Austrian empire pre- sented an ultimatum to the Serbs, demanding that they suppress Serbian nationalist activity by punishing activists, prosecuting terrorists, squashing anti-Austrian propaganda, and even allowing Austrian officials to intrude into Serbian military affairs. Two hours before the expiration of the forty-eight-hour deadline on the ultima- tum, Serbia responded. Its response fell short of complete acceptance of the terms and so was re- jected by the Austrian authorities. As war be- tween Austria and Serbia loomed on the horizon, both sides experienced a massive groundswell of optimism and patriotism regarding the impend- ing conflict. Austria declared war on Serbia and immedi- ately began shelling Serbian defenses. As these aggressions began, the Russian army started mo- bilizing to aid the Serbs, and it was soon clear that Russia was going to become thoroughly in- volved in the war. Two days later the German T E R A T U R E A N D I T S T I M E S V O L U M E
army began to mobilize and entered the war to support Austria. Germany was jubilant about the prospect of war and believed that its entrance into the conflict was perfectly justified. On Au- gust 1, 1914, Germany's Kaiser spoke to a crowd of thousands, telling them, "A fateful hour has fallen upon Germany. Envious people

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