The Wars

The Wars

by

Timothy Findley

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Shelters dug into the sides of trenches in World War I to protect soldiers from shellfire. Dugouts often contained simple furniture such as tables and bunkbeds where men could eat and rest.

Dugout Quotes in The Wars

The The Wars quotes below are all either spoken by Dugout or refer to Dugout. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Trauma and War Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin Australia edition of The Wars published in 1995.
Part 2, Chapter 9 Quotes

All he wanted was a dream. Escape. But nobody dreams on a battlefield. There isn’t any sleep that long. Dreams and distance are the same. If he could run away…like Longboat. Put on his canvas shoes and the old frayed shirt and tie the cardigan around his waist and take on the prairie…But he kept running into Taffler. Throwing stones. And Harris.

Related Characters: Robert Ross, Captain Eugene Taffler, Harris
Page Number: 102
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3 Quotes

In another hole there was a rat that was alive but trapped because of the waterlogged condition of the earth that kept collapsing every time it tried to ascend the walls. Robert struck a match and caught the rat by the tail. It squealed as he lifted it over the edge and set it free. Robert wondered afterwards if setting the rat free had been a favour—but in the moment that he did it he was thinking: here is someone still alive. And the word alive was amazing.

Related Characters: Robert Ross
Related Symbols: The Four Elements
Page Number: 127
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire The Wars LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Wars PDF

Dugout Term Timeline in The Wars

The timeline below shows where the term Dugout appears in The Wars. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 2, Chapter 7
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon
Robert and Levitt relieve two other men, Devlin and Bonnycastle, from their position in the dugout. Devlin, who dreams of owning an antique shop, shows them the valuable pieces he has... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 8
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon
Honor, Duty, and Heroism Theme Icon
Poole makes chicken stew for the men in the dugout, which is well-furnished, “civilized,” and “proper” compared to most. Over dinner, Levitt insults Bonnycastle by... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 9
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Lying in his dugout bunk, Robert thinks about how strange Levitt and Rodwell are, reflecting that everyone is strange... (full context)
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon
Honor, Duty, and Heroism Theme Icon
...instinctively afraid of sleeping and is unsettled by the surrounding sounds and smells of the dugout. He longs to escape into a dream or run away like Longboat, but thoughts of... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 13
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Honor, Duty, and Heroism Theme Icon
...the Germans set off a string of land mines in Ypres. The trenches around Robert’s dugout are blown up, and he takes shelter under his bunk with Rodwell’s animals. In a... (full context)
Part 3
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Honor, Duty, and Heroism Theme Icon
Robert’s dugout is bombed by the Germans. After the roof caves in, he, Rodwell, and Levitt are... (full context)
Trauma and War Theme Icon
...the battlefield is one of genuine awe rather than detachment. They arrive back at Robert’s dugout, where Levitt is disturbingly calm. Robert tells him to help Poole fix the brazier so... (full context)
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon
...regroup in the midst of this chaos. Rodwell and Poole repair the roof of the dugout, while Levitt goes mad and sits immobilized with his books piled up on his knees.... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 4
Trauma and War Theme Icon
...of the small room and into the large, open bathhouse, having become claustrophobic since his dugout in St. Eloi collapsed. Robert scrubs himself and soaks in one of the bathtubs for... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 5
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon
...conversation and Poole tells him that Bonnycastle died but that the other men from their dugout are fine. (full context)