Saturday, February 24, 2007
"A Base is a place where you
meditate, perhaps you should pray; a place where in peace Tommies should write their last letters home and describe how the guns are 'owling 'orrably"(297).
Tietjens is now in France serving in a replacement depot."When you came in the space was desultory, rectangular, warm after the drip of the winter night, and transfused with a brow-orange dust that was light. It was shaped like the house a child draws"(Ford, 291).Outside there is an air raid going on. "These German air-raids had lately become continuous".The men are waiting to be drafted. There is a general sense of claustrophobia ("The Base was packed with men, tighter than sardines"Ford, 295.), mixed with chaos, panic ("he desired to cut certain throats with sharp trench knife that he had. That would take the weight off his chest" Ford, 294.) and insanity ("There were a great many kinds of madness" Ford, 298.). Tietjen's is keeping an eye on an officer who appears to be going insane, being asked by the general to do so. The general is "Tietjen's godfather and his father's closest friend"(298). The man mentions Tietjen's wife: "They say up at H.Q. that your wife has got hold of the disgusting general....Tietjen's lauged at this madness" (299). Tietjen's reflects on the "extraordinary beauty of the wife from whom he was separated" (299), or how he had thought they had separated. He sees a vision of her:"she appeared before him so extraordinarily bright and clear in the brown darkness that he shuddered" (299). He repeatedly sees Sylvia as radiating light and "in a golden gown" (565). Sylvia even sees herself in a dress of "golden tissue" (403). Captain O Nine Morgan dies- plaguing Tietjens for the rest of No More Parades. Tietjen's exclaims "What about the accursed obsession of O Nine Morgan that intermittently jumped on him?....And all the time a dreadful depression!A weight!"(484).Tietjens also has a ghostly visit from O nine Morgan in A Man could Stand Up (561)."If he, Tietjens had given the fellow the leave he wanted he would be alive now!"(309)... To get past the shock he tries to picture Valentine's face.
The reader gets a sense of the intimacy and comradeship between the soilders. They look out for each other and try to keep each other sain.
*"He felt arising in his motherly heart that yearned at the moment over his two thousand nine hundred and thirty four nurslings a necessity, like a fatigue, to extend the motherliness of his functions to the orfcer....he felt vaguely that it was a fatigue to have to mother an officer" (293).
*"[Tietjen's] sticks up in that blessed old camp like a blessed she-chicken sitting on addled eggs....That's what they say of him"(396).
*Tietjen's let the trunk of the body sink slowly to the floor. He was more gentle than if the man had been alive"(308).
This theme follows throughout No More Parades for example:
*Levin says to Tietjens "We are all one family"(451), when Tietjens tries to explain what happened the night in Sylvia's room when he hit Perowne.
*Cowley explains to Sylvia how O Nine Morgan died in Tietjen's arms "The captain held him in his arms while he died, as if he'd been a baby. Wonderful tender, the captain was! Well you're apt to be when it's one of your own men...No rank then!"(433).
*"Cowley snuffed in Tietjens' ear something that Sylvia did not catch- consolatory and affectionate. That intimacy was more than she could bear"(435).
Soldiers as property/ Tietjen's Toryism:
The following quotes are examples where Tietjens is expressing his dislike for the middle class because the middle class ran the war for their own reasons; like a game:
*"It had occurred to him that it was a military duty to bother himself about the mental equilibrium of this member of the lower classes. So he talked...any old talk, wearisomely, to keep his mind employed! Captain Mackenzie was an officer of His Majesty the King; the property, body and soul, of His Majesty and His Majesty's War Office. It was Tietjen's duty to preserve this fellow as it was his duty to prevent deterioration in any other piece of the King's property.That was implicit in the oath of allegiance" (305).
*"The curse of the army, as far as the organisation is concerned, was our imbecile national belief that the game is worth more than the player"(305).
*"Intense dejection, endless muddles, endless follies, endless villainies. All these men given to the hands of the most cynically care-free intriguers in long corridors who made plots that harrowed the hearts of the world. All these men toys, all these agonies mere occasions for picturesque phrases to be put into politicians' speeches without heart or even intelligence. Hundreds of men tossed here and there in that sordid and gigantic mud-brownness of mid-winter" (296).
It was a monstrous tea party:
I never thought about it before but this opening scene does seem like the morbid flip side of an Augustus tea-party; a way to show social upheaval. The way the soldiers are sitting around the hut, having different conversations. Then an "immence tea tray, august, its voice filling the black circle of the horizon, thundered to the ground" (Ford,291). This gives an image of how things were before the war in the sense of over indulgence and now that the "tea-tray" has crashed to the ground, it's as if the world has been turned upside down; a social upheaval. As soon as the tea-tray has flipped, the pace of the narration picks up and in turn gives a sense of the chaos of the war.
*The opening scene of No More Parades is indoor of a replacement depot in France. "We are boxed in.... it's indoor- even domestic aspects are stressed almost to the point of claustrophobia. About all the doings in that hut, clings a suggestion of a monstrous tea party. The falling, and lethal, insides of shrapnel shells are called 'candlesticks'. Of the men by the crazier, one is muttering dejectedly about his unfaithful wife, another about a queer cow that "took a hatred for its cawve" (Ford, 291), the Canadian sergent-major is worrying himself about a new pocket book. The hut is shaped like the house a child draws. Inside is a curious air of false domesticity, into which the sounds of the outside come, appropriately like the falling of a huge tea-tray" (Gordon, 8).
Gordon, Amrose. The Invisible Tent. University of Texas Press. 1964
Compare this to where Valentine and Tietjens have just come back from their overnight horse carriage ride in book one and they have a collision with the General and since Tietjens is seen with Valentine (so early on a Sunday, alone) an again there is a social upheaval:
"Not ten yards away Tietjen saw a tea-tray, the underneath of a black-lacquered tea-tray, gliding towards them, mathematically straight, just rising form the mist. He shouted, mad, the blood in his head. His shout was drowned by the scream of the horse..... there was a crash and scraping like twenty tea-trays, a prolonged sound" (139).
*Not only can a tea-tray be seen to represent a social upheaval but it can be seen to represent a Freudian aspect of the book: Tietjen's subconscious mind; the suppression of Tietjen's emotions. When Tietjens cannot handle a situation,the tea-tray can be seen to represent the upheaval of his mind.
*In book one Valentine plays on the name of Tietjen and refers to Tietjen's father as Tea-Tray(84).
*The emotions that Tietjens suppresses are of his wife, Sylvia. For example, in book one Sylvia brings him a tea-tray (31). When Tietjens is thinking Sylvia's sexual wrongs he sees O Nine Morgan's blood (381).
*Tietjens also suppresses his emotions surrounding the death of Captain O Nine Morgan and therefore blood, as well, can be seen to represent the tea-tray.
*In the scene where Valentine and Tietjens are on the all night horse carriage ride, when the horse is bloodied due to the collision this is associated with the tea-tray (139) and the tea-tray can also be seen to represent the General who is a representation of the war and blood.
1.Artillary Horses 2.Horses with Gas Masks
There are several references to war horses throughout No More Parades For example:
Army Veterinary Corps:
"The A.S.C. fellow [Hotchkiss] had been talking positively about horses. He had offered his services in order to study the variation of pink eye that was decimating all the service horses in the lines. He had been a professor-positively a professor- in some farriery college or other. Tiejen's said in that case, he ought to be in the A.V.C. - The Royal Army Veterinary Corps perhaps it was. The old man said he didn't know. He imagined that the R.A.S.C. had wanted his service for their own horses...."(316). As well as references to a charger (320), a galloper (388) etc. The use of horse was important in the war and Tietjen's. They could be seen as man's best friend on the battle field.
The use of horses in the war:
*Troops trained to fight on horseback were called Cavalry: In Canada some mounted troops were refered to as "Dragoons" and "Light Dragoons".
*"For almost two hundred years there had been two types of mounted solider in British service. Units of horse fought on horseback using edged weapons, the horse itself being a weapon used to ride down the enemy in charge of a pursuit. Dragoons were originally infantrymen, equipped with firearms, who fought on foot but were transported by horse, although over the years they were used less and less.... Light Dagoons were less heavily equipped and mounted on faster horses to facilitate their use in reconnaissance and screening operations"(11).
(The Royal Canadian Armoured Corps by John Marteinson and Micheal R. McNorgan. 2000. The Royal Canadian Armoured Corps Association)
*"The contribution of animals, especially to the transport services and artillery, was of central importance to the Great War. Without them the guns would have run out of ammunition, the infantry would have missed breakfast, the distribution of mail would have ceased, and many urgent casualties could not have been evacuated from the battle zone"(193).
*"Although horses were useless in the trenches, "in Flanders and France, as on all other fronts, horses and mules were required for two basic purposes. One: to pull guns and wagons and carry packages and two: to wait patiently for the artillery and infantry to breach the enemy positions and then dash through and cut off their escape. During the peak month of August 1917, the British had 368,000 horses and 82,000 mules on the western front. One third of these were for riding and the others were draught or pack animals"(190).
*"Horse transport also played an essential role in maintaining the lines of communication.Supplies for British field units were taken by train from the channel depots to railheads approximately ten to twelve miles from the trenches. At the rail heads they uploaded on to motor trucks, or sometimes light railways, to be transported to an assemble point about five miles from the front line. The combat divisions collected their supplies from these advance depots and brought them forward by horse or mule power. Horses were used to pull the divisional supply trains because the last few miles of road were so badly catered that they were impassable to all motor vehicles except the heavy artillery’s caterpillar tractors"(190)
*"Man and beast marched together into battle. There were few heroic charges, instead an endless column of animals bearing heavy loads toiled through the mud and rain, often in darkness; frequently to the accompaniment of shell or machine-gun fire(203).
*According to John Glubb (presumming a solider) experienced transport horses did not worry about shelling, and only gave a “plunge” when one exploded nearby. They stuck to their task with remarkable stoicism” (191).
*"At Flers on the
*"After a hard day’s work, in muddy conditions it could take up to twelve hours to clean the horses and their harnesses"(191).
*"The use of horses and mules, and the stock of military animals increased from 535,000 in 1915 to 870, 000 in 1917"(193).
The sick and wounded:
*"Sick and wounded horses and mules were the responsibility of the Royal Army Veterinary Corps. Up to 90,000 animals at a time were to be found in hospitals and convalescent homes with British forces throughout the world. On the Western front the treatment of battle casualties was revolutionized. Mobile veterinary sections accompanied the combat divisions. Wounded animals were destroyed on the spot or taken to casualty clearing stations, where their injuries could be assessed and emergency treatment given. Survivors were evacuated to the main hospitals in horse drawn ambulances or the motor vans donated by the R.S.P.C.A. Convalescent animals were sent to recuperation centers before being returned to the front. Preventative medicine was also practiced and animals were regularly inspected for disease. One third of the horses on the western front were provided with rudimentary masks which were effective against chlorine but not mustard gas"(198,99).
*"Gunfire and gas accounted for a surprisingly small proportion of horse mortality. Horses had mostly to fear from exhaustion and mud borne and respiratory diseases(199).
*"Taking the war as a whole, each year 15% of the animals employed by the British army were either killed, reported missing, died or abandoned"(199).
*"Frequent calls were made during the war for economies in the use of horses". It was thought that horses played a small role in the war and that the cost of them was not equal to their use. " Vast sums were psnt buying and shipping animals from far places of the world to the battle field"(202)."Lord Kitchener, the secretary of state for the war, ordered the appointement in 1916 of a committee to report on ways of reducing the number of horses"(192).The R.S.P.C.A. wanted the number of horses reduced for other reasons. The death rates of army horses in other wars was appalling to the R.S.P.C.A. and "petitions were affressed to the gorvernment calling for action to be taken to reduce the suffering of wonded animals. They lobbyed the government on animal welfare issues and they donated motor ambulances to the veterinary service.
This is reflected in Parades End:Tietjens says: “some damn fool of a literary civilian had been writing passionate letters to the papers insisting that all horses and mules must be ablolished in the army... Because of their pestilence- spereading dung...It might be decreed by A.C.I. that no more horses were to be used! ...Imagine taking battalion supplies down by night with motor lorries..." (Ford, 484)
After the war:
*"When the war was over the disposal of army animals was a sensitive political issue in the
*"The disposal of horses and other animals was placed under the jurisdiction of the veterinary corps. French and Italitan farmers were rationed to a maximum of two animals each and they had to produce a certificate of good behaviour signed by the mayor. About 45,000 animals were sold to French horse butchers"(201)
*Despite promises some horses were still sold and put to work in quarries and the transport industry...this was exposed in the 1920's amd Dorothy Brooke the wife of an English officer, exposed the scandle and established a charity to help the victims" (201).
*"over 100,00 horses were repriated to Britian and sold at auction draught- horses being the greatest in demand....The British army sold 225,812 animals at hoime and abroad by march 1919"(201).
Source:Article by John Singleton
Past and Present No.139.(May, 1993), pp 178-203
*In book one Tietjens says " A wonderful magnetism with horses. Perhaps with women too?" (140)."Captian Tietjen's was known to be wonderful with horses" (372).
Tietjen's appears to have great powers over horses, but why not Sylvia? Or does he?
-Horses were seen as stoic soliders (article) as well as soilders seemed stoic. They struggled to no let their inner id be shown and the character of Valentine appears to be similar in this way. Tietjen's refers to her in book one as just as good as a man- maybe that is why he gets along with Valentine more? Because she is as stoic as he is. Less of a wild mare?
*Tietjen’s repeatedly refers to Sylvia as a "thoroughbred" (299).
"She was a thoroughbred. He had always credited her with being that. And now she was behaving as if she had every mean vice that a mare could have. Or it looked like it. Was that, then, because she had been in his stable? But how in the world otherwise could he have run their lives? She had been unfaithful to him. She had never been anything but unfaithful to him, before or after marriage. In a high handed way so that he could not condem her, though it was disagreeable enough to himself" (Tiejen's 350).
The Artillery Horse's Prayer
"To thee, my master, I offer my prayer.
"Treat me as a living being, not as a machine.
"Feed me, water and care for me, and when the day's work is done, groom me carefully so that my circulation may act well, for remember: a good grooming is equivalent to half a feed. Clean my feet and legs and keep them in good condition, for they are the most important parts of my body.
"Pet me sometimes, be always gentle to me so that I may serve you the more gladly and learn to love you.
"Do not jerk the reins, do not whip me when I am going up-hill. Do not force me out of the regular gait or you will not have my strength when you want it. Never strike, beat or kick me when I do not understand what you mean, but give me a chance to understand you. Watch me, and if I fail to do your bidding, see if something is not wrong with my harness or feet.
"Don't draw the straps too tight: give me freedom to move my head. Don't make my load too heavy, and oh! I pray thee, have me well shod every month.
"Examine my teeth when I do not eat; I may have some teeth too long or I may have an ulcerated tooth and that, you know, is very painful. Do not tie my head in an unnatural position or take away my best defense against flies and mosquitoes by cutting off my tail.
"I cannot, alas, tell you when I am thirsty, so give me pure, cold water frequently. Do all you can to protect me from the sun; and throw a cover over me-not when I am working, but when I am standing in the cold.
"I always try to do cheerfully the work you require of me: and day and night I stand for hours patiently waiting for you.
"In this war, like any other soldier, I will do my best without hope of any war-cross, content to serve my country and you, and, if need be, I will die calm and dignified on the battlefield; therefore, oh! my master, treat me in the kindest way and your God will reward you here and hereafter.
"I am not irreverent if I ask this, my prayer, in the name of Him who was born in a stable."
NOTE-Written by Captain De Condenbove, French Army, during the World War.
The above appeared in Field Artillery Manual, Vol. I, by Arthur R. Wilson, Capt., Field Artillery, U.S. Army, published 1926.
Other animals used in the war:
Dogs to search for the wounded
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
War Poetry: "[Tietjen's] had a rule: Never think on the subject of a shock at the moment of a shock"
"And Inbetween our carcass and the moil
of marts and cities, toil and moil and coil
Old Spectre blows a cold protecting breath
Vanities of vanities, the preacher saith
No more parades, not any more, no more oil
Unambergrise'd our limbs in the naked soil
No more funeral struments cast before our wraiths..." (318,19)
Tietjens says about the poem: "the general idea was that, when you got into the line or near it, there was no room for swank, typified by expensive funerals. As you might say: No flowers by compulsion.. No more parades" (320)
How the Poem came about in the story:
Tietjen's is just handed a slip of paper from Mackenzie marked private. Tietjens sank down bulkily on his bully-beef case. He read on the buff at first the initials of the singnature,"E.C. Genl.,: and then: "For God's sake keep your wife off me. I will not have skirts round my H.Q.You are more trouble to me than all the rest of my command put toether"(314).
........"The hut was moving slowly up and down before the eyes of Tietjens. He might have just been kicked in the stomach. That was how shocks took him. He said to himself that by God he must take himself in hand, He grabbed with his heavy hands at a piece of buff paper and wrote on it in a coloumn of fat, wet letters
a and so on. He said opprobriously to Captain Mackenzie: "Do you know what a sonnet is? Give me the rhymes for a sonnet. That's the plan of it." Mackenzie grumbled: "Of course I know what a sonnet is. What's your game?" Tietjen's said: "Give me the fourteen end rhymes of a sonnet and I'll write the lines in under two minutes and a half." Mackenzie said injuriously: "If you do I'll turn it into Latin hexameters in three. In under three minutes"(315).
"Mackenzie had tossed the sheet of rhymes under his nose.Tietjens read: Death, moil, coil,breath, Saith-" The dirty Cockney!" Oil, Soil, wraith..."(317).
Ideas on how Trench war poerty originated:
Taken from the Journal of Modern Literature; Fall2006, Vol. 30 Issue 1, p104-128, 25p. Written by Nils Clausson "Perpetuating the Language": Romantic Tradition, the Genre Function, and the Origins of the Trench Lyric.
Modernist writers for the most part rejected the whole idea of genres. This essay examines several major and minor trench poets that show consitency of "code" through them.
*"Without a code, without a language, not only is it impossible to express what one wants to say, but it is also impossible to have anything to say in the first place- a view of language that those still in the grip of expressivist, Romanitc, and humanist theories of literature find threatening".
*"To write a trench lyric, it is not enough to have experienced the reality of trench warfare: one must...be enamoured of the poetic form, the genre, that one must imitate in order to say anything poetic about one's experience....The would be poet must imitate a model. When World War One broke out , not only was there no tradition of soilders writing poetry, but there was simply no English tradition of was poetry upon which a modern poet could draw on to write about trench warfare"(3).
*So therefore a "code" had to be made.
*"For it is the conventions(the code) that create the "content"; content does not come unmediated from experience through the poet and then into the poem"(3).
*"the dominant poetic models available to them for writing about their war experience, the patriotic sonnet and the Romantic lyric, were designed neither to critocize the war nor represent it realistically"(4).
*The Romantic lyric was kept as a primary inspiration, but it was transformed into a new lyric form, the trench lyric, "that was capable of representing what had only seemed alien and ungraspable"(4).
*M.H. Abrams in his essay "Structure and Style in the Greater Romantic Lyric": The greater Romantic Lyric typically consists of the first person utterance of a thoughtful, sensitive, and perceptive speaker who is usually alone in (or close to) a natural landscape. This landscape is described in some detail, usually in the opening lines. Then some particular aspect of the landscape (flowers, a bird) attracts the attention of the speaker who is moved to reflect, speculate, or otherwise respond to this arresting aspect of the natural scene. The rest of the poem consists of his reaction, reflection, or analysis, as the peom shifts from the preceived object to the preceiving mind(8,9)".
*"So strongly had this genre enforced itself upon the literary consciouness of poets and readers alike that, by the end of the nineteenth century, it had virtually synonymous with the lyric poem. The solider poets of the Great War took this model with them, along with their rifles, kitbags, and copies of the Oxford Book of English Verse, into the trenches of France and Flanders"(9).
*"Sassoon for the most part abandoned the nineteenth-century nature lyric and turned instead to eighteenth-century epigram and satire as models, [though] he sill wrote several poems in this Romantic tradition" (9).
*"Owen rarely wrote first person lyrics in the manner of the Romantics and Victorians, and therfore the pattern is less evident in his poetry"(10).
*"Rosenberg and Blunden however, never abandoned the form; instead they transformed it and therby accommodated an unprecedented subject matter to a familiar literary precedent" (10).
War Poetry as a diversion:
*In part two of No More Parades Tietjen's uses poetry in order to divert his thoughts from his wife's four in the morning departure.
"He had a rule: Never think on the subject of a shock at the moment of a shock. The mind was then too sensitised. Subjects of shock require to be thought all round. If your mind thinks when it is too sensitised its then conclusions will be too strong. So he exclaimed to Mackenzie: "Haven't you got your rhymes yet? Damn it all" (315).
*I imagine poetry was used as a diversion as well from the war itself. It was also a good healing mechanism. A way to deal with the overwhelming emotions of the war and shock.
Kirchner's "self portrait of a soldier" painted in 1917, during a furlough caused by a nervous breakdown.
*"the main and perhaps most passionate tenet of impressionism," Ford wrote. "was the suppression of the author from the pages of his books. He must not comment; he must not narrate; he must present his impressions of his imagionary affairs as if he had been present at them" (Gordon, 45). Comment: Can Parades End be viewed by this definition as an immpressionist novel? I don't really see a suppression of the author from the pages of this book. A lot of the characters can be seen to represent people in Ford's life and even Ford himself. Maybe it can be viewed as the Ford Maddox Ford's inner id coming through the pages?
*"by 1918, Ford believed, "every one who had taken physical part in the war was then mad." Ford himself suffered a serious mental breakdown in France, as does Tiejens also" (Gordon, 73)
*"If the novel represents a transcendence or "breakthrough," then whose? Tietjens? Or Tiejens' and the author's? Probably both. For Tietjens, the slow ordeal of which his experience in the trenches is the outward and visible sign is a matter of sloughing off a false -or a superficial- identity and, in his resulting nakedness and dispossession, finding .. his supreme idenity. For Ford, recording this process was at last a chance to have his fantasy and his realism together..."(Gordon,75)
*"It seems quite appropiate that Ford Maddox Ford's maternal grandfather was born in France, in Calais, and appropiate that he was a painter. In Ford's novels the effects are very often painterly- and nearly always French. In "getting in" an interior- and especially in Parade's End- he will characteristically give the source and quality of light"(Gordon, 38) for example: "A shadow- the shadow of the General Officer Commanding in Chief- falling across the bar of light that the sunlight threw in at his open door" (444).
*"Fords eye had been trained early in the studio of his grandfather"(Gordon, 38)
*Examples of his painting technique: "...the space was desultory, rectangular, warm after the drip of the winter night, and transfused with a brown-orange dust that was light"(291)
*"The sergent-major looked poetically down a ribbion of white-washed stones that descended the black mountainside. Over the next shoulder of hill was the blur of hidden conflagration"(312).
*"Captain Mackenzie in the light of a fantastically brilliant hurricane lamp appeared to be bathing dejectedly in a surf of coiling papers spread on the table before him"(312)
source: Gordon, Ambrose.The Invisible Tent.USA:University of Texas Press,1964.