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Slaughterhouse-Five (Vonnegut) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions
1. After reading the book, why do you think that Vonnegut dedicated his novel to Mary O’Hare and Gerhard Muller?

2. Why does Vonnegut choose to write a “jumbled and jangled” war book?

3. What is the significance of the phrase “so it goes”?

4. What is the significance of the bird cry “poo-tee-weet”?

5. Explain the subtitle, "The Children’s Crusade or a Dirty Dance With Death."

6. Discuss the major themes of Slaughterhouse-Five?

7. How does Vonnegut use time to communicate his themes?

8. Discuss the use of irony in the novel.

9. Are we intended to believe Billy’s tales of Tralfamadore or are we, like Barbara, supposed to assume that Tralfamadore is a figment of Billy’s post-brain-damaged imagination?
(Questions issued by publisher.)

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