Kurt Vonnegut’s satirical, often dark and usually humorous novels are both popular and complex. His somber yet fantastical vision of the world was born out of harsh personal experience. Most notably, as a young man Vonnegut enlisted to fight in World War II, where he was captured by the German army. As a prisoner of war, he survived the fire bombing of Dresden. This experience would become the source material for Slaughterhouse Five, one of his most important works.
We have selected one of his short stories to share, “2BR02B,” in which Vonnegut sketches a future world where most of the “problems” have been solved. People no longer age or suffer from disease; prison, crime and war have been eradicated. Utopia…or dystopia? What do you think?
Read, print and share – and then offer your response to the story in the comments below.
Image: U.S. Army portrait of Pvt. Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., By United States Army [Public Domain], via Wikimedia Commons