About the novel Slaughterhouse Five?

About the novel Slaughterhouse Five?I am currently reading the novel "Slaughterhouse 5" by Kurt Vonnegut. I need to write an essay on it and it's on "man's struggle with soceity". I was wondering if anyone can give me some thoughts about this because i don't have much clue of what to write about this topic. thank you very much

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2 Answers to “About the novel Slaughterhouse Five?”

  1. cashmeres says:

    Possibly “time” or “time travel” or ability to remember what is the good in one’s life is a key to analyzing this novel.Remember that KV actually experienced the Dresden firebombing, and that he deeply felt “there was no exit” (Sartre’s play by that name, No Exit) from a “social situation” which is like an avalanche for most of the people, somewhat innocent bystanders.So, with “space” being “no exit,” and “time” being a part of space, KV finds freedom or relief from an intolerable social situation by becoming free in his mind, free to travel in time to the more pleasant memories of his childhood, and so on.This “trapped in the Matrix” is typical for e.g. “1984″-type dystopias, as well as the general existential “No Exit” scene.In this sense, KV is like Soren Kierkegaard, who, confronting Hegel’s Matrix, posited a “leap of Faith” as “the Way” up and out.This tension between “self” and “society” is also pictured between Edmund Husserl’s “Pure Ego” and the opposite view of his sometime student Martin Heidegger, who viewed not the “leap of Faith” which “Pure Ego” resembles, but the Hegelian state-as-”god” which is man’s 20th century experience.In Kierkegaard, there are for everyone three concurrent spheres: the aesthetic or immediate existential, the reflective upon the aesthetic (= philosophical), and the transcendent kingdom within of spiritual realization, which, like the Biblical patriarch Jacob climbing his Angelic ladder, finds “God is in this place, and I knew it not…until now.”Instead of finding God while in his Dresden foxhole, KV posits a kind of humanist parallel world of the Tralfamadorians, not unlike the Na’vi “space brothers” who are “kinder, gentler.” So SH-5 is more of a fanciful philosophizing about how things ought to be, kind of like “South Pacific” < [external link] … , and SH-5 is typical of wartime and wartime memories, in which either very gritty realism or escapism (or both, in SH-5′s case) are more prominent themes for the individual caught in an avalanche of social strife.Hope the above helps.

  2. doublesi says:

    You could try examining how the character uses time travel to deal with the events surrounding him, especially when it comes to the unpleasantries of war.