However, Billy Pilgrim, the main character in the novel Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Opponent, is one such human. Blessed with a special gift of being able to walk through time and space unexpectedly by an alien race called Transformational (from a planet by the name of Thralldom), Billy Pilgrim encounters a variety of humorous, ironic, ridiculous, and moieties dark situations.
Opponent, being a veteran of the second World War himself, also had encountered his fair share of unfortunate and dark situations. From this, Opponent uses both men to portray the negative effects of war on the human psyche (such as P. T. S. D. ), and how they can create lasting mental and emotional scars on soldiers and those involved with wars. Veterans of foreign wars often suffer from many lasting negative effects on their personality and physical abilities.
An extremely common example of this is insomnia, tie possibly due to an inability to suppress memories of events during the war. Opponent, having been a veteran of World War II and the extremely gruesome Dressed bombing, is a victim of such a plight. Often times, late at night, when suffering from said inability to sleep, Opponent would find his way to the alcohol cabinet, get absolutely drunk, and, after having driven his wife away with his drunkenness, would phone “this friend or that one, from whom [he] had not seen in years” (5).
The use of alcohol is a very common form of sublimation used by veterans o deal with the difficult and scarring memories that they suffered from having at these late night hours; PUTS in its strictest sense is While this pastime may have been unhealthy and negative in its nature, it was from this late night pastime that Opponent came in contact with a man he had served with in World War II by the name of Bernard V. O’Hare.
O’Hare, as well as Opponent, suffered from this insomnia, which allowed for him to be awake when Opponent decided to call him late at night. After the phone call, Opponent took a visit to Reshape’s house and his family to talk bout and hopefully get help recollecting the events that went on during the war and Dressed to help with the writing of Slaughterhouse Five. When visiting O’Hare, Mary, Reshape’s wife, vented her frustration with Opponent and the war; she was angry with Opponent because, when Opponent and O’Hare were in the war “[They] were Just babies! (18) and that she was angry because that she believed that when Opponent finished writing his book, and all was said and done, the book would glorify war and make it seem attractive and enticing, thus making it so that “[The] babies upstairs” old be in the next wars. Those babies upstairs were O’Hare and Evensong’s Slaughterhouse Five By Dan-Mallory children; the men’s involvement in the war and Evensong’s subsequent writing of a book struck a negative chord with her because she felt as if his book was going to glorify war and make war seem attractive, and therefore putting the lives of their own babies in danger.
This shows the reader that the war was obviously a very traumatic experience for Mary O’Hare; she clearly has a great deal of resentment and anger awards the war and in such Evensong’s visit to her rekindled her stress and frustration. Billy Pilgrim, on the other hand, experiences his PUTS through his traveling episodes to Transformable; any random point in time, when Billy becomes unstuck, he could be having a dream about his family with Montana Wildcat, or traveling non- linearly through events in his life.
Transformable is the poster-child for a utopia: it is a place in which, while Billy is not always necessarily happy and comfortable, he is in place that he is safe and free from harm, whereas the other places and memories that Billy goes through are generally unhappy and uncomfortable for Billy. Billy’s mind experiences Transformable and the Transformational time-traveling episodes because they are hallucinations and visions that come about due to trauma from the war. An example of this was, when Billy was at the mental hospital, about 20 years after the war.
It is during this time that he goes through Transformable, into a childhood trip through the American West, and then into Germany. During this time Billy experiences a great amount of distress; when he was at the childhood trip to the Grand Canyon, he was quite unhappy and uncomfortable because not only was the trip to the Canyon extremely uncomfortable and extremely off-putting to him, but also he did not like being in the Canyon because it made him uncomfortable and unhappy.
After the memory of the Canyon, Billy became unstuck in time again and went to Germany. It was during this that Billy and the rest of his fellow American prisoners were put in a camp with British Poss.. The British Poss. has a great mount of provisions and were excited to meet the Americans, so they prepared a feast for the incoming Americans. This feast, however, quickly went quite awry because the Bruits were becoming frustrated with the disheveled state of the Americans.
Then, at a play performance of Cinderella, Billy began to laugh uncontrollably and was then sent to the camps hospital, soon after waking up at the hospital in New York. All in all, Billy Pilgrim’s Journey is one that is wrought with shortcomings and unfortunate circumstances; he did not have a very easy life either, especially after he war, having come home from the war a little bit crazy and mentally unhinged.
But that craziness was not without purpose; this craziness clearly illustrates the tragic and scarring nature that many war veterans suffered from on a daily basis. This deeply and negatively impacted the life of Billy Pilgrim to the point where he needed to be hospitalized; he was clearly insane and had clearly become insane during his time in the war. Which begs the question: When war creates such demons inside someone to the point where they are so mentally unstable, is war really worth it?