So it goes


Unlike Alice Walker’s “The Color Purple”, I thoroughly enjoyed my read of “Slaughterhouse-Five” by Kurt Vonnegut, as its genre extends into the domain of science fiction and war, which are some of my favorites book genres. Its scientific aspects includes the theme of time travel which is constantly seen throughout the book. I appreciated the new depiction of time travel, as I am constantly exposed to the oversaturated representation of time travel, done through the usage of an intricate machine, where the characters literally go through time and retain all their former physical and mental attributes. Whereas Vonnegut’s interpretation of time travel was done by having his characters fall asleep, or have his mind wander off to another time of his life. This creates an uncertainty of the character’s mental state in the reader’s mind, which drastically boosts the books nuances and makes it more interesting.

The Color Purple utilizes a linear progression and narration of the story, which is being accounted by the two main characters through the form of letters.  It wields the epistolary method of recounting a story. This creates an intimate and open relationship between the reader and Celie (main character), who progresses a lot through the advent of challenges. Moreover, this technique reinforces the theme of self-expression and vulnerability, as Celie expresses her voice through her letters.

The Awakening also employs the usage of linear story progression, however, its narration is done from an unknown 3rd party which is omniscient. This provides an even closer look on the life of Edna (main character) , and her struggle for self- discovery. Allowing the readers to constantly engage with the characters that engage with Edna , and also follow all their developments . In addition, this narration style enables readers to empathize with Edna’s emotional journey and social constraints .

Without the usage of these factors the readers would not be able to follow the lives of the characters closely, and emotionally invest in any of the events being experienced by them either. Which Slaughterhouse-Five employs as its narration technique. Vonnegut opposes the traditional techniques used by “The Color Purple” and “The Awakening”, which allows readers to be effectively immersed in Vonnegut’s world of chaos and its nonsensical nature. “So it goes”, Vonnegut uses this  phrase multiple times throughout the book, which reflects the desolate and dire nature of war, and shows a good representation of Nihilism through Billy’s character. All of these little features make the overall narrative technique employed which effectively served to disorient and confuse the readers, and add to the overwhelming negative outlook of war.



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