Socratic Disscusion Topics
Ideas For Disscusion

The Instinct Of Survival


Chapter Four

In a literary analysis


Temper us in fire, and we grow stronger. When we suffer, we survive Cassandra Clare


     Only the lucky survive. In chapter four of All Quiet on the Western Front, the idea of survival is within every soldiers minds and hearts. During the bombardments on the Western Front, Paul Bäumer and others are tasked to survive, but it is not as easy as it seems; however, with a little luck and knowledge you may survive. In the book, the soldiers are tossed into the harsh reality of war. They felt danger surrounding them in ways that could only be described as a life-death situation. When faced in situations like this, Paul and the other German soldiers return to the mindset of prehistoric life; that mindset is to survive. This type of mind will take over the body and guide them toward safety and security; saving them from any impending danger that could be coming their way. Midway through chapter four we encounter this scene.

“At the sound of the first droning of the shells we rush back, in one part of our being, a thousand years. By the animal instinct that is awakened in us we are led and protected. It is not conscious; it is far quicker, much more sure, less fallible, than consciousness. One cannot explain it…It is this other, this second sight in us, that has…saved us, without our knowing how.“ - All Quite on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque 

The instinct of survival is a quality that has found all who’ve entered the Western front; however, not all have been so lucky to live. Finding this trait within themselves is what led to Paul surviving; and the lack of other doing this is what led to them dying. Without the instinct of survival we would have lost all the main characters in the first bombardment. The importance of survival in is beyond words because of the dangerous environment that the characters are placed in. On the Western front survival is prominent, in spite of a agony survival surrounds all who encounter the treachery of the Western Front. Survival is an instinct within all of us, one that burns in the heat of battle.



duiqrng my experience writung this Literary Analysis with John I enjoyed it. After looking back at our piece I liked it, John and I worked effectively within a short time. I believe John and I have many similar writing styles which made it much easier to work with eachother. Due to our focus and brainstorming before we began to write we almost finished writing our piece, but we did later reconvene during hall to finish writing our head and heart of the piece. Sadly I wasn’t able to focus as much during that time compared to class, but we were still able to finish our piece, and know we created a good literary analysis.