Slaughterhouse Five
Tuesday December 04th 2012, 1:36 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

In this novel, Billy Pilgrim lives in the time of World War II. Being a high school student, he is forced to joined the army against his own will. In today’s society I could not imagine being forced to join the military. Although, Billy did not choose to go into the army, he definitely learned a lot from it. To me, this could relate to school. I never choose to go to school throughout my life, but my parents had enrolled me and the government makes it mandatory. School has taught me everything I know and because of my parents decision to enroll me, I hope to further my education by my personal choice of going to college. (Text to Self)


The descriptions and images that I obtained of Billy Pilgrim while reading the novel reminded me of  Chicken Little. A weak little Chicken who is made fun of for reporting that ” the sky is falling.” By the end of his story Chicken Little becomes the hero and ends up saving the day. Much like Chicken Little Billy is made fun of for his size and characteristics that are not associated with heroism. Yet they both prove others wrong. This story of a weakling being able to save the day and be a hero is a classic that many different cultures have versions of. In Slaughterhouse Five it is represented through war, but in modern times it is represented by stories such as Chicken Little a story I am familiar with from childhood. (Text to Text) (Text to World)( Text to Self)


It is some what strange to me that throughout the book Billy is confused on where he is and what part of his life is going on. There are many parts that are realistic and others that are fictitious. Though much of the novel in Science Fiction, the time period in which it takes place is during World War II. It also takes place in Dresden, Germany a country which was part of the Holocaust. Over my high school career I have studied a lot about the Holocaust. The Holocaust means a sacrifice completely consumed by fire. This was the final solution of Hitler for the jews, to exterminate them. Hitler was the leader of the Nazi regime, which originated in Germany. While reading this novel, I imagined Germany to look like it did during the Nazi regime.(Text to World) (Text to Self)(Text to Itself)


When he wasn’t in war Billy was a trained Optometrist. As an optometrist Billy has the professional duty of correcting the vision of his patients. If we extend the idea of seeing beyond the literal scope of Billy’s profession, we can see that Vonnegut sets Billy up with several different lenses with which to correct the world’s nearsightedness. This reminded me of The Great Gatsby, in which the eyes of Doctor T. J. Eckleburg are a pair of fading, bespectacled eyes painted on an old advertising billboard over the valley of ashes. The theme of sight in both novels really stuck out to me. (Text to Text)

I think that the importance of there being aliens and another planet in the book are to show that there were thoughts like that occurring during this era. Not many believed those who believe in aliens and still don’t, but it is interesting to know that they thought like that so many years ago even if it was a fictional novel. It reminded me of a show American Horror Story in which one of the characters is sent to a mental hospital because he thinks that he was abducted by aliens. It takes part around the time near after WWII, the same era. That too is fictional. (Determine importance )

After reading the novel I found out that there was a movie made based on book. I want to watch it because I think it would be interesting to find out how it is interpreted onto the big screen. It is good for books to be made into movies because it is another way the world can access it, besides reading it. (Text to Self) (Text to Text) Text to World)


“Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops.” This shows that Americans of this time were very materialistic. They were very focused on creating realities that were not real based off of their possessions. This also relates back to The Great Gatsby. This quote is showing what the people were like during this time.  It is mentioning the life being made sense out of random things that don’t really correlate which is how things must have felt at a time of war. (Determine Importance) (Text to Itself)

“Billy answered. There was a drunk on the other end. Billy could almost smell his breath—mustard gas and roses. It was a wrong number. Billy hung up.”  This quotes shows importance because it is relating back to chapter one when he first deals with the drunk. (Text to Itself) Also, it is very imaginative the fact that he says he can smell the mustard gas and roses through the phone. In reality you cannot actually smell things through the phone, but the authors description shows that there must be a strong affiliation between the man and those smells.(Determine Importance)






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