Kurt Vonnegut: Player Piano

Topics: Kurt Vonnegut, World War II, Science fiction Pages: 6 (2118 words) Published: December 7, 2012
Many readers of literature are very familiar with Kurt Vonnegut and his abilities, as an author, to portray fantastic literature. He is particularly known for his uses of science fiction. Even his shorter stories and different books, that are not supposed to be science fiction genre, have sort of a sense of his wacky science fiction style. Kurt Vonnegut very often makes a connection to nature or the real world style with science fiction, mostly by the use of humor and irony. Kurt Vonnegut was born on November 11, 1922, in Indianapolis, Indiana. He passed away at the age of 85, on April 11, 2007. Kurt's parents worked hard, and both his grandfather and father were architects. His grandfather was the founder of Vonnegut Hardware Company in Indianapolis and was all about hard work and labor. Kurt Vonnegut majored in chemistry and was very interested in writing and graphic arts, which made it hard for him to connect with his father. Kurt decided to attend the University of Cornell after graduating from Shortridge High School in May of 1940. Vonnegut developed an early understanding for his writing ability, when he became the editor for The Cornell Daily Sun. Instead of following his passion for writing, he fell into his father's ways and enlisted in the U.S. Army to study vastly about mechanical engineering. To make matters worse, a couple of years after being enlisted, his mother committed suicide by overdosing on sleeping pills on Mother's Day of 1944. This was the same year Vonnegut got involved as a soldier in World War II, and has many memorable experiences on the battlefield and as a pioneer of war. It is here that Kurt develops many of the ideas and viewpoints he will use as an author in his future pieces of literature. After the dreadful war, the first move that Kurt Vonnegut makes, with his very successful post-war career, is to attend the University of Chicago as a graduate student in anthropology. In addition to returning to school, Vonnegut gets hired and begins work for the City News Bureau of Chicago. Many things occurred while Vonnegut was in Chicago. Kurt develops many short stories and begins many books through the influences he has had in his life. Kurt leaves Chicago to work for General Electric for his brother, Bernard, who was famous for finding out how to artificially stimulate precipitation, which is an amazing accomplishment. Kurt Vonnegut also had a sister who died of cancer around this time. In New York Kurt does everything while publishing stories, including working for Sports Illustrated Magazine and volunteering as a firefighter in the town of Alplaus in New York. For a few years, he gets a critical job as a writing teacher at the Writer's Workshop at the University of Iowa. This university is where he wrote one of his best sellers and personally one of his favorite pieces of work as a 20th century writer, Cat's Cradle. Kurt Vonnegut also married his first wife (out of two) at this time. Her name was Jane Marie Cox and she was his high school sweetheart. In Kurt's lifetime, he had seven children, four of which were adopted.

Throughout Kurt Vonnegut's writing career, he wrote many short stories, many full books, publishes many different arts he has developed, and releases a very detailed portfolio of his works called “Free at Last”. Some of his most popular and most critically acclaimed books are Cat's Cradle, Slaughter House – Five, Mother Night, Galapagos, Missing in Action, Armageddon in Retrospect, A Man Without A Country, and many, many short stories and write-ups that he has compiled throughout his career. Through my research I noticed, along with many other critics, Kurt's pattern, or his central style in writing, in that it is shown and portrayed in essentially all of his works. I've also noticed that Vonnegut generates his ideas, and motivation, and themes, from his education and mostly through his experiences in his very eventful and interesting life....
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