Antiwar Theme In "Slaughterhouse Five" Essay

1312 words - 5 pages

The dictionary defines that the word 'war' is a prolonged state of violent, large-scale conflict involving two or more groups of people. Though war is a huge impact to people in many ways. The author of novel "Slaughterhouse-Five" is also written by a person who had miserable experience about the war but also inspired by war. In the novel "Slguterhouse-Five", the author Kurt Vonnegut portrayed his feeling on war. In other words, this entire novel depicts an antiwar theme and demonstrates his own sentiments throughout the novel with the use of irony, satire, and dark humor. Some saying that this categorize as science fiction or autubiographical, but it can also be interpreted as an anti-war piece.The novel "Slaughterhouse-Five" can be interpreted as an autobiographical novel, therefore, this story relates with author's life and experience. Kurt Vonnegut is an American novelist from Indianapolis, Indiana, born in 1922. A very importantpart of Vonnegut's life was when he served in WWII, and was a prisoner of war in Dresden, Germany. During that time he experienced the firebombing of Dresden, which affected him hugely. This event had around 135,000 causalities, which is about twice the number killed in atomic bombing of Hiroshima. Many people claim that his experience in the army is what made him write "Slaughterhouse-Five." In the novel, Vonnegut created the main character Billy Pilgrim to express his point of view thorough the character. Vonnegut uses Billy to deliver the audience his antiwar views. According to Vonnegut, "I have always rigged my stories to include myself" (American Writers 753).The novel "Slaughterhouse-Five" can be interpreted as an antiwar book. Also, the novel includes black humor that entertains the audience. Black humor is seen in describing the main character as a "filthy flamingo" or when Billyattempted to publish his encounter with the Tralfamadorians. Both are slightly satirical, and when this style is employed in parts of the book about war, it enforces a sense thatthese ideas are, "nothing tragic, but inexplicable and absurd" (Novels for Students 270). Vonnegut uses this black humor to the satire of self-satisfaction that he felt resultedfrom the war. This dark humor is a way to express his feelings against war. The novel, "about war and the cruelty and violence in war" (Vit), is written in no particular time, which can also serve as a metaphor of antiwar. Vonnegut did not provide the audience particular order of the events. According to Novels for Students, "unstuck in time" (264) is a metaphor for the sense of alienation and dislocation which follows the experience of World War II and also a metaphor for feeling dislocated after war.The antiwar message also depicted with the ironies. In the novel, a one of prison of war survives the fire bombing, but dies afterward from the dry heaves because he has to bury dead bodies, Vonnegut uses irony to tell a message antiwar. Also, when Billy Pilgrim and Ronald Weary join the...

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