I just finished reading Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five a few days ago and was thinking about what Vonnegut meant to accomplish with the book. I’ve always heard it said that it’s an anti-war book. The first chapter says as much. But… That’s not what it seems like to me.
To me it seems like the book is more about inevitability than war. He used the phrase “So it goes” whenever there was a mention of death, which seemed like a way of saying ''we will all die" many times throughout the story. Also, the Tralfamadorians explanation of time leaves no room at all to believe in free will.
So, is this really an anti-war book? Or did Vonnegut just think that the setting of WWII and the fire-bombing of Dresden was a fitting back-drop for a different theme?