Honors American Literature
27 June 2012
The Use of Atomic Weapons
On August 6th, 1945, the world was forever changed when the world’s first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan. The attack was made as an attempt to end World War 2, and it succeeded at a devastating price. John Hersey’s Hiroshima depicts six different accounts of victims of the bomb. The journalistic novel tells how each of the people began their day, how they survived the explosion, the response, and where they were 40 years later. Each account is different, and they all represent the various ways that the bomb hurt the people. These six individual catastrophes illustrate the horrible effects of atomic bombs and how the use of them should not be even considered by any empathetic human being. First, there is Dr. Terfumi Sasaki, a twenty-five year old surgeon who wasn’t physically harmed by the bomb. He was in the Red Cross hospital where he worked when the bomb went off. After the explosion he rushed to help those around him. Dr. Sasaki represents all of the people who were not physically harmed but were mentally scarred. Much of his time in the years following the war was spent treating keloids. Keloids are the wounds that formed after the initial burns of the explosion; more than half of those within two kilometers of the explosion got them (Invisible Effects of A-Bomb). He worked endlessly to try and remove these scars. His work was not very successful and eventually he moved away to start a clinic. This shows that he wanted a clean start and to get away from the terrifying memories. Dr. Sasaki is a perfect example of how atomic weapons can not only scar people physically, but mentally as well. Dr. Masakazu Fujii was a doctor who ran a private clinic in the city of Hiroshima. He was outside his clinic when the bomb hit and the explosion crushed the building and sent both of them flying into the river. In the following years, he rebuilt his clinic and...
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