Warfare In Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five

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This story has a variety of themes, one theme that is prevalent throughout the story is Warfare. Vonnegut horrific war experience inspires him to write a story on the magnitude of war. In the novel “Slaughterhouse-Five” Kurt Vonnegut writes a story about an anti-war hero named Billy Pilgrim. Kurt Vonnegut uses the protagonist, Billy Pilgrim, to express his belief in war. From beginning to end Vonnegut criticizes war particularly “ the Bombing of Dresden. Vonnegut despises war, he believes that war has no purpose and the idea of glorifying it is nonsense. His belief in war is the factor for him writing Slaughterhouse-Five or The Children Crusade as an anti-war novel. The most significant event Vonnegut experiences at war is “The Bombing of…show more content…
Vonnegut does not directly express his feelings towards war because he believes “there is nothing intelligent to say about a massacre” (pp 19). Billy Pilgrim is used to showing the terrible consequences of war. Billy’s time in the war greatly impacted him internally and his outlook on the world around him. Billy’s experience as a prisoner of war gives him a view on war; nothing comes out of it. As Billy comes home from the war, he attempts to distance himself from the outside world becoming an alienated individual. Vonnegut uses other characters such as Tralfamadorians, to express his anti-war sentiment. The Tralfamadorians are capable of observing a fourth dimension. Due to this special ability, they hold a completely different mentality in comparison to humans. Tralfamadorians believe that everyone is bound by fate and they have no control over their destination which is free will. The Tralfamadorians belief of fate aims to justify the irrationality of war by criticizing human's thoughtless decisions on initiating wars. The Tralfamadorians also mention that there will always be a war on earth since humans are designed to glorify war.This statement was intended by Vonnegut to dishonor war and label it in a negative way. Billy experiences post-traumatic stress disorder after the war tells the readers how his life has…show more content…
This title was introduced in the story when Vonnegut promises Mary O’Hare that he will not write a book that glorifies war and he will call it “The Children Crusade”. The meaning behind this title is intense that war is not heroic or glorious and that government propaganda tries to blind people from the ugly truth of warfare.This title means the soldiers in the warfare, are"children" implying that they are inexperienced and innocent. Another reason why Vonnegut portrayed the soldiers as children is to emphasize the fact that wars are fought by children, young men, who are incapable of comprehending the cause of the war. Therefore Vonnegut attempts to convey his message that these "children" soldiers are being exploited by sadistic leaders. Vonnegut has chosen the word "children" as children have no duty in the war thus the war should not be occurring and
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