Document Type

Student Research Paper


Spring 2021

Academic Department


Faculty Advisor(s)

Dr. Kimberly VanEsveld Adams


Famed World War One poet Wilfred Owen is perhaps best known for his poems that provide insight into the minds of men who suffered from PTSD, or “shell shock” caused by fighting in the Great War. Owen, along with being an incredible poet, was likely a gay man, but many critics have glossed over these unproven aspects of his history for myriad reasons. While the sexuality of Wilfred Owen cannot be posthumously confirmed, the evidence pointing away from heterosexuality cannot be ignored. Several of his poems support this idea, namely a few unfinished snippets from his youth and “Greater Love,” a World War One poem with vivid homoerotic imagery. His sexuality also bleeds through many letters of his, most of them written to his probable lover Siegfried Sassoon. Owen died tragically young leaving critics with little writing and life experience to extrapolate from. However, his relationships and writings make it clear that his feelings toward his fellow soldiers surpassed camaraderie.


Scholarship and Creative Arts Day (SCAD); EN 230 Modern British Literature- Reactions to the World Wars; Diverse Voices