Essay on Why Slaughterhouse-Five Is an Anti-War Novel

Essay on Why Slaughterhouse-Five Is an Anti-War Novel

Length: 659 words (1.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Slaughterhouse-Five displays many themes. However, there is a dispute as to whether the book is an anti-war novel or not. Slaughterhouse-Five, the character Kurt Vonnegut explains to Mary O’Hare, is intended to be an anti-war novel, and he says that it shall also be called The Children’s Crusade because of the effect it had on young men who fought in the war. Slaughterhouse-Five is an anti-war novel because Vonnegut, the character, says it is in the first chapter, because it depicts the terrible long-term effects the war has on Billy, and because it exposes war's devastating practices.
The first element to why Slaughterhouse-Five is an anti-war novel is because Vonnegut, the character, says it is. In the first chapter the character Vonnegut speaks with Mary O'Hare, the wife of Bernard O'Hare and antagonist of war, regarding the book that he will write and how it views war. Vonnegut also discusses with Mary why the book will be called The Children's Crusade. Mary says, "‘You will pretend you were men instead of babies...’" (14). Mary is accusing Vonnegut of writing the novel and saying that they were prepared for war because she thinks that he will glorify war by disregarding the fact that he and her husband were just young men not ready to fight in a war. She worries he will instead create characters who were heroes of war and show that they were ready to fight. Vonnegut answers, "‘I'll tell you what,’ he said, ‘I'll call it The Children's Crusade’" (15). He uses this as a response to show that he is writing an anti-war novel because he wanted to emphasize that they were not ready to fight in war and that they should not have fought in the war because they were young and unprepared.
Another reason Slaughterhouse-Five is an a...


... middle of paper ...


... go down in that stick and work" (214). This scene shows a horrific reality because it exposes the gruesome deaths of many innocent people during the bombing. It also displays the terrible reality that a whole city population could be wiped out in just one bombing.
In conclusion, Slaughterhouse-Five is an anti-war novel because Vonnegut, the character, says it is in the first chapter, the terrible damage it left on Billy, and how it exposes war's horrifying practices. Knowing these elements, one might wonder why people still have wars. Although these anti-war novels cannot completely stop wars, they are important. The role that such novels play is one of raising awareness of war's actions and wrongdoings. Since the role of the novels is important, authors should continue to write them to keep people informed and educated about a problem of such a huge magnitude.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Analysis of Slaughterhouse-Five, a Novel Written by Kurt Vonnegut Essay

- ... He soon married and had three children, and worked at General Electric and wrote and published short stories to support his family. In 1952, his very first novel, “Player Piano” was published. Over the next 17 years, Vonnegut published 5 more novels, including Slaughterhouse-Five in 1969. This was the book that launched his fame, and a film adaptation of the book soon followed in 1969, which was successful and only increased his popularity further. He went on to write 9 more novels before his death in 2007....   [tags: Germany, Bombing, World War II]

Better Essays
1184 words (3.4 pages)

Slaughterhouse Five By Kurt Vonnegut Essay

- Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut is an anti-war historical fiction novel about the bombings of Dresden, Germany in 1945 at the end of World War II. Slaughterhouse-Five succeeds as a historical fiction novel because it is fictional and imaginative but also set in the past, rooted in factual information about that time period and the events that took place in Dresden. Much of the historical information in Slaughterhouse-Five is considered eye-witness information because the novel is semi-autobiographical because Kurt Vonnegut was a prisoner of war in Dresden and he also survived the fire bombings....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut]

Better Essays
1232 words (3.5 pages)

The Destruction Of Dresden On Slaughterhouse Five Essay

- when the reliability of its historical descriptions was brought into question. Irving wrote that the bombing killed more than 135,000 people in less than twelve hours, but later research concluded that the bombing killed roughly 25,000, though Irving refused to believe that figure (Evans 1). Further inconsistencies within the book reveal that Irving used German propaganda to estimate his figures (Evans 4). Irving also used misconstrued, unreliable pieces of evidence from a single witness, Hans Voigt, to write elements of the book, instead of gathering accurate information that could create a dependable nonfiction book (Evans 2)....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut, Dresden]

Better Essays
1191 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on Slaughterhouse Five Are Obvious And Piercing As One

- Kurt Vonnegut’s anti-war novel, Slaughterhouse Five, illustrates the ghastly experiences within World War II and the journey through the universe and time of the main character, Billy Pilgrim. Although war is a sensitive subject in most cases, Vonnegut’s sarcastic twist mixed with his dark humor on the matter helps bring light to the fact that war is horrendous and can change people down to their core self. Slaughterhouse Five demonstrates the reality of war throughout its major themes, historical accuracy, and Kurt Vonnegut’s personal experiences within World War II that shines light on the horrendous acts of war that has plagued an abundant amount of countries for centuries....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut]

Better Essays
1158 words (3.3 pages)

Essay on Slaughterhouse Five By Kurt Vonnegut

- “Force is all-conquering, but its victories are short-lived.” Stated Abraham Lincoln. That quotes applies to Slaughterhouse-Five because even when you think you have conquered something and achieve the victory doesn’t mean that it will last long. Billy Pilgrim is the protagonist of Kurt Vonnegut Jr. anti-war novel, Slaughterhouse-Five. Billy Pilgrim is non-heroic in the anti-war novel which makes the theme of the book Slaughterhouse-Five a man who is “unstuck” in time. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut is an anti-war novel....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut, Kilgore Trout]

Better Essays
1981 words (5.7 pages)

Kurt Vonnegut 's Slaughterhouse Five Essay

- In a world that has become callous to cruelty and harshness, authors began to develop characters which embodied those who were struggling to cope with growing inhumanity and impassivity. Such authors are as postmodernists. Fragmentation and paradoxes characterize their novels. Within postmodernism, the use of science fiction allows the writer to demonstrate worldviews while avoiding the imposition of perverted casualty upon the subject. One author who has mastered the era of postmodernism is Kurt Vonnegut....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut]

Better Essays
1666 words (4.8 pages)

Essay about Slaughterhouse Five By Kurt Vonnegut

- How has Slaughterhouse Five borrowed from other texts to emphasize the theme of war. The novel Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut is a narrative about a man named Billy Pilgrim. Billy participates in World War II and the novel follows his life and focuses on his reaction to the war and his travels to an extraterrestrial planet called Tralfamadore. Many speculate that this book reflects Vonnegut’s feelings about war and have drawn parallels between Vonnegut and Billy Pilgrim. Kurt Vonnegut has the characters read various texts throughout Slaughterhouse Five to emphasize his feelings about war....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut, Kilgore Trout]

Better Essays
807 words (2.3 pages)

Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five as an Antiwar Novel Essay

- Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five as an Antiwar Novel War can affect and inspire people to many degrees. Kurt Vonnegut was inspired by war to write Slaughterhouse-Five, which is a unique book referred to sometimes as a science fiction or semi-autobiographical novel. But, if facts are inferred in the novel, like the similarity of Vonnegut to Billy Pilgrim, facts about other characters (specifically the Tralfamadorians), and the themes and structure of the novel, another way of viewing ;this book can be seen that is as an anti war piece of writing....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five Essays]

Free Essays
2286 words (6.5 pages)

Slaughterhouse-Five Essay: Three Themes of Slaughterhouse-Five

- The Three Themes of Slaughterhouse-Five Kurt Vonnegut did a great job in writing an irresistible reading novel in which one is not permitted to laugh, and yet still be a sad book without tears. Slaughterhouse-five was copyrighted in 1969 and is a book about the 1945 firebombing in Dresden which had killed 135,000 people. The main character is Billy Pilgrim, a very young infantry scout who is captured in the Battle of the Bulge and quartered to a slaughterhouse where he and other soldiers are held....   [tags: Slaughterhouse-Five Essays]

Better Essays
938 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on The Catastrophe of War in Slaughterhouse Five

- The Catastrophe of War in Slaughterhouse-Five      Russian Prime Minister Joseph Stalin once said, “A single death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic.” The impersonalization of war and death that he shares is an realistic characterization of war; originally intending to improve the lives of people, yet inevitably leading to the destruction of human life. Author Kurt Vonnegut endorses this view in his novel Slaughterhouse-Five; he shows that war can never be justified as long as innocent life is lost....   [tags: War Slaughterhouse Essays Papers]

Better Essays
1931 words (5.5 pages)