Generals Die in Bed

In: English and Literature

Submitted By mariek
Words 1387
Pages 6
The novel Generals Die in Bed by Charles Yale Harrison defines the nature of war through brutal, dehumanizing, detailed text, and horrific experiences which are bestowed on the soldiers at war. This allows the mind of the readers to visualize the overwhelming impact the war had on the soldiers. Harrison exemplifies this when he talks about the trenches, the ammunition battles, and the psychological impact each stage of the war took on the soldiers. Transforming boys into men, the war forever changed the lives of the soldiers that fought for this country. Harrison’s book made it difficult for the war to be forgotten. Through the first-person narrative, Harrison exposes the reader to fear, allowing the reader to understand through the close views of the narrator, what a soldier actually experiences. Harrison builds opposition between the lives of boys, and their transformation into the nightmare of becoming a solider. The novel tests the reader and places his/her mind in the battlefields of war through metaphors, simile and imagery. This is such an important part in getting the point across and a huge reminder of how frightening war can be because Harrison gives attention to the five senses so the readers can understand the experience the narrator is going through. Harrison forces the reader to focus on the military aspects of what a solider really is, portraying how unavoidable the fear of dying and killing is, and just how easy it was for the innocence of a life to be taken. For example, the narrator is placed in an ammunition battle: “suddenly the stars revolve. I land on my shoulder. I have been tossed into the air. I begin to pray ‘God-God-please. I remember that I do not believe In God. Insane thoughts run through my head. I need something to grasp”(Harrison 26). Another example of when the curiosity of the other soldiers towards Brown’s marriage with Martha…...

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