Introduction - Introduction To the biographer and student...

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Unformatted text preview: Introduction To the biographer and student of literature, Erich Maria Remarque, who has been called the "recording angel of the Great War," was an enigma, a man rife with contradictions and contrasts. He admired stylish women, Impressionist art, an antique Lancia convertible and a racy Bugatti, and Chinese art from the Tang dynasty and was obsessed with pacifism, free speech, and privacy. Following the overnight success of his landmark war protest novel, All Quiet on the Western Front , Remarque was able to indulge numerous sensualistic tastes and escape the mundane hometown that he so vividly describes in his prose. Expunging his middle name — Paul — and replacing it with Maria, his mother's name, he immortalized the name Paul in Paul Bäumer, the speaker of his novel, who lives out the neorealistic horrors of trench warfare — chlorine gas, bayonets, tanks,...
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