Ptsd In Slaughterhouse Five

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Post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental disease that develops in those who have experienced a scary or dangerous event and it affects an estimated 6.8% of Americans in their lifetime (National Institute of Mental Health, “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder”). Post-traumatic stress disorder is also abbreviated as “PTSD.” Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut, follows Billy Pilgrim, a World War II soldier, on his adventures through both the war and after the war. Pilgrim believes that he is visited by aliens from the planet Tralfamadore and abducted by them. He also thinks that he is able to “time travel” to different events throughout his own life. Due to his condition of thinking that he is able to time travel, Pilgrim can be said to have PTSD.…show more content…
For instance, war veterans sometimes cannot view fireworks as it induces fear in them due to the sound of the explosions seeming like gun shots. In Slaughterhouse-Five, author Kurt Vonnegut, a former soldier in World War II, explores the concept of post-traumatic stress disorder by identifying the underlying causes, highlighting the impacts and symptoms of PTSD, and evaluating coping mechanisms.
During a time period where post-traumatic stress disorder was still incredibly controversial, Vonnegut utilized the character of Billy Pilgrim to identify the causes of PTSD. The mental disorder can have many causes as explained in the article “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,” in which the National Institute of Mental Health states, “Not everyone with PTSD has been through a dangerous event. Some experiences, like the sudden unexpected death of a loved one, can also cause PTSD” (National Institute of Mental Health, “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder”). PTSD, like many other diseases, can arise from a number of conditions, making it hard to pinpoint where it stems from. Vonnegut takes into account that PTSD can come from a number of sources, providing a plethora of possible explanations for Billy’s mental capacity throughout the novel. For instance, early in Billy’s life, Billy, along
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