War can affect many people on different levels; be it inspire them or discourage them. Vonnegut took what happened to him in World War II and wrote Slaughterhouse 5 with the hope that it would motivate some form of movement against war. Within the story, Vonnegut inputs his antiwar opinions.
As a member of the US Army, Vonnegut served in the war and suffered the tragedy of being a prisoner of war in Dresden, Germany. This consumed his inner thoughts to the point where he wanted to try and relive some of the worst interactions that occurred so that he could include them in his book. This included his experiences as a Dresden prisoner of war and the firebombing that killed over 130,000.
When Vonnegut began to think about writing an antiwar book, he asked a filmmaker what he thought, and the filmmaker replied that he should just write an anti-glacier book since it will have the same effect as an anti-war book given that wars are as impossible to stop as are glaciers. Through questions and reconnecting with old friends, Vonnegut began to try and recollect his suppressed memories of the war. In his description of his endeavors, he writes about his old army buddy Bernard O’ Hare and his wife, Mary. He includes her views on the war that also seem to be anti-war and how she fears that what Vonnegut will write will only praise what occurred in the war and not show what truly happened and what a horrifying experience it really is.
Billy Pilgrim, the main character in Slaughterhouse 5, appears to be a reflect Vonnegut and his experiences in the war. Pilgrim’s view within the story, during and after the war, was that he was against it. He seems to be unprepared for what he faced. Pilgrim was an assistant to the chaplain and somehow wound up in the middle of the battle behind enemy lines. He is presented as though he is ready or prepared for the war and what it entails. Vonnegut allows Pilgrim to go back and forth in time and relive his war days so that they are shared to...