Slaughterhouse Five Reflection

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Knowing that 2015 marked the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Dresden during the Second World War immediately brought me back to the days which I delved into the book Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut for a course at Peking University, China when I was one of the two chosen students from Macao Polytechnic Institute to study there as an exchange student. It was not long when I was enlightened and became certain of my specialisation in literature-Psychoanalysis. In my preparation of a Master’s degree, I have studied widely around the topic Literature and Psychoanalysis. I hope to examine closely the complexity of the human psyche and its literary presentations and constructions. I am also interested in the analysis of the body and the psyche. I am fortunate to have taken the course Contemporary Chinese and American Fiction in Comparative Perspective at PKU which I was introduced to literature and psychoanalysis. The main characters in the selected readings are all trauma victims. Take, 1986 by Yu Hua, a contemporary Chinese avant-garde writer, for example. The protagonist was a history teacher during the Cultural…show more content…
Kurt Vonnegut employs metafiction in writing Slaughterhouse Five, the novel was a fuse of both fact and fiction. Billy, the protagonist, was an unexpected war survivor in the bombing of Dresden and had illusory fantasies to cope with his unspeakable trauma. I am interested in examining how history is represented in metafiction and how mnemonic symbols of traumatic experiences can be redefined in metafiction. Carl Jung’s The Concept of the Collective Conscious leaves me with questions that I would like to examine in the course. One of which is the question of whether a post-war trauma archetype pre-exists and the relationship between remembered memories and collective
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