Another example of abused power comes in the form of the teacher Kantorek. As a classroom teacher is is carried away by patriotism and enthusiasm for the war effort. He has no direct experience with war but feverishly preaches about duty to one’s country as a supreme value. Teachers like Kantorek have power and influence over shaping young minds. As a schoolboy, the narrator Paul trusted Kantorek and believed him to be wise. He goes to war optimistic and believing in it’s purpose. After experiencing the brutality of the front lines first hand, he bitterly reflects on the disconnect between the dehumanizing reality of war and the idealistic vision sold to countless impressionable young men by people they trusted, who turned out to have no direct knowledge of the function, purpose, or reality of war.


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