ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Books, Literature, and Writing»
  • Books & Novels

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut

Updated on August 24, 2012

Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death by Kurt Vonnegut

Synopsis

‘Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death’ by Kurt Vonnegut is yet another story of travel which says about the experiences of a soldier named Billy Pilgrim who undertakes a similar jouney. The book includes his experiences during the Second World War. Kurt Vonnegut was an advance scout with the 106th Infantry Division, a prisoner of war and a witness to the fire-bombing ofDresdenon 13th February 1945. Nearly 135,000 people died in the ruins ofDresden, which means that it was the greatest man-caused massacre of all times (71,379 people were killed by the atom bomb dropped onHiroshima). Kurt Vonnegut in ‘Slaughterhouse-Five’ gives a wonderful view of the war in which he explains many things and it is hard to decide, what exactly the main theme is. Slaughterhouse-Five is about war, about the cruelty and the violence done in war, about people and their nature, their selfishness, about love, humanity, regeneration, motion, and death.

Slaughterhouse Five analysis

‘Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance With Death’ also explains a quest for the value of life. The book involves a personal as well as impersonal narrative. The latter is the story of Billy Pilgrim who, similarly to the author, fights in World War Two, is taken prisoner by the Germans and witnesses the fire-storming of Dresden. The first theme of the book is about nothing but war and its contrast with values of life like humanity, honesty, love, innocence, beauty etc. The book gives out the message that war is never good for humanity. The book teaches how stupid it is to destroy relationships through unnecessary wars. The author admonishes humanity about the destructive nature of war. The book echoes the fact that it is always better for us to love everybody rather than fighting over unwanted matters. The book emphasizes the importance of values of life that often gets perished with wars and other problems. The book is therefore a story about the quest for the valuable qualities of life. The author of the book uses the word love infrequently, yet efficiently. We find in the story that when Billy got caught by the Germans, he never considers them as cruel capturers. He rather considered them as innocent, loving people. Billy, in spite of his sufferings, did not find fault with others. He rather searched for the goodness in them. He valued love and never developed resentful feelings against his oppressors. Apart from emphasizing the importance of love and other qualities of life, the author of the book explains the contracting nature of men and women. Men often engage in wars and fights which the women try to avoid. The author advices his readers to love human beings. He exposes the worthlessness of wars and fights. Through the woman characters the author emphasizes the importance of peace and mental strength. The woman characters in the book are mentally strong, have strong will, and are very humane and loving. Slaughterhouse-Five or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death thus repeatedly deals with valuable theories of humanity.

Slaughterhouse Five quotes

Even though the book contains numerous themes, the quest for the values of humanity is the most prominent one. The author wants to tell readers that no matter what happens, we should retain the values of humanity. We should not let anybody or anything reign upon our personalities, be it a god, be it a politician or anybody else. The book explores the idea of fate and free will. Billy Pilgrim says there is no free will; an assertion confirmed by a Tralfamadorian, who says, "I've visited thirty-one inhabited planets in the universe . . . Only on Earth is there any talk of free will" (Vonnegut, 1971). ‘Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance With Death’ thus deals with a quest for the values of life.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)