Sunday, March 21, 2010

Slaughterhouse - Five Chapter 8 Focus Questions

1. Why does Campbell visit the American POWs?
  • to recruit them "for a German military unit called 'The Free American Corps.'"
2. Vonnegut explains that there are "almost no characters in this story." What is significant about this statement?
  • that no one matters, people can't control what happens to them, and making decisions is what makes up a character
3. How does Billy meet Trout?
  • noticed a group of kids surrounding a man, recognized him from his picture
4. What does Trout's story about robots say about the bombing of Dresden?
  • that humans are fundamentally okay with causing human suffering, but that they are petty and shallow, hating physical "ailments"
5. Vonnegut mentions "somewhere a big dog barked." In what other situations has this been mentioned?
  • the dog that was barking when Billy and Weary were captured by the Germans
6. Who did Kilgore Trout receive his one letter from?
  • Eliot Rosewater
7. What two 'lies' does Trout tell Maggie White?
  • that it is fraud to write something that isn't real
  • that God is listening and if she says too many bad things she'll "burn forever and ever. The burning never stops hurting."
8. How does Billy react to the barbershop quartet? Why does he react this way?
  • "found himself upset by the song and the occasion... [he] had powerful psychosomatic responses to the changing chords... his face became grotesque"
  • the quartet reminds him of the guards in Dresden during the bombing
9. How does Billy describe Dresden after the fire-bombing?
  • like the surface of the moon
10. What do the American fighter planes do after the fire-bombing?
  • shoot at anything that is moving

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