Kurt Vonnegut Jr. Term Paper

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Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. was born November 11, 1922, in Indianapolis, Indiana, the son of,

Kurt Vonnegut, Sr., a successful architect, and Edith Sophia Vonnegut. He had two

older siblings, a brother Bernard, and a sister Alice. He attended Short ridge high

school. This is where he first realized his talent for writing. He was the editor of the

school newspaper. Kurt graduated in 1940, and after high school, attended Cornell

University and studied bio-chemistry, and was also a columnist and editor of the

Cornell daily sun. However, because of bad grades, Kurt found himself almost flunking

out of Cornell University. He saved himself from expulsion by joining the army in

1942. While in the army, several devastating experiences happened to Kurt. First in

1944, he received the news that his mother had committed suicide. A few months

later Kurt was captured by the German Army. He was forced to produce a vitamin

enriched malt for pregnant women. While doing this he happened to survive the

firebombing of Dresden. His book Slaughterhouse-five is partially about the bombing

of Dresden

After being rescued by the Soviets, Vonnegut returned home. He was working as

a Police Reporter for the Chicago News Bureau and studying anthropology at the

University of Chicago. He later moved to Schenectedy, New York. Here he worked

in Press Relations for the General Electric Plant. This experience that led to the

creation of his first novel Player Piano, . It was after the publication of this novel that

he moved to Rhode Island, while in addition to writing short stories, he taught High

School English and opened the first Saab dealership in the United States. After

realizing the shrinking of the Short Story market, he began concentrating entirely on


It was Vonnegut's novels that gained him critical acclaim in the late sixties and

seventies. His Science Fiction novels created a popularity and demand that nearly

overwhelmed him. He has continued to write novels, his last being Time Quake, in 1997.

Kurt Vonnegut has also written two autobiographical books, Palm Sunday, in 1981, and

Fates Worse than Death, in 1991, but true to his form, neither follows the path of a true


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