Johnny Got His Gun: the Horror of War

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Trenches full of rotting bodies. Deadly shells falling from the burning sky. Savage screams of young men, drowning in blood and dirt. All these are aspects of war, of the First World War. Dalton Trumbo's anti-war novel, Johnny Got His Gun, ideally captures the horrors of war, and its effects on individual soldiers, their fate, their mentality, and their families. The author introduces the reader to Joe Bonham, a young American soldier tragically wounded on the last day of World War One. Throughout the story, the author leads the reader through the emotions, thoughts, and reflections of the protagonist. Thanks to the honesty and detail with which the story is written, the reader is able to fully experience the impact and the tragedy of war.

The last day Joe Bonham could recall was November 11, 1918; the last day of the First World War. Joe joined the army after some important man tapped him on the shoulder and said that Joe has to defend his country and make the world safe for democracy. Joe got his gun, and now he was sank into the deep darkness of a coma, after being blown away by an enemy shell. After an unknown period of time, the young wounded soldier awakes in a hospital bed. Tragically realizing that he had lost both his legs, both his arms, and was unable to see, speak, hear, or smell. Not long ago, a healthy young men he was, now, a useless stump. The only difference between Joe's mutilated body and a raw piece of meat, was his consciousness, his feelings, and the ability to think and reason. The protagonist walks on the edge of sanity, barely recognizing being awake from asleep. Throughout the story, Joe dwells in the darkness and nothingness of his new life, criticizing the pointlessness of war, the evil of the power holding class, and the grotesque fight of ideologies, when really it is just business. Finally, the main character finds a way to communicate with the outer world; the Morse code. When Joe asks to be released from the hospital, and...