Johnny Got His Gun Essay

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In Dalton Trumbo’s thought provoking novel Johnny Got His Gun, the main character, Joe Bonham, is a World War 1 veteran who has lost everything to war. He one day wakes up in a hospital only to realize he was brutally crippled by an artillery shell. He awoke to find that he had no arms or legs and that he had lost most of his face as well, leaving him unable to interact with the outside world in anyway, even though his mind was still perfectly functional. Because of his, the story takes place entirely within the black of Joe’s mind, which allows the readers to get intimate with his thoughts, feelings, and memories. The audience soon becomes familiar with his past life as he spends most of his time reminiscing about the people he was involved with…show more content…
Initially a somewhat proud soldier, he began to wonder if war was really the answer, or if it was an over glorified and ultimately useless attempt at achieving peace through violence. The readers can easily sympathize which Joe throughout the story, at first taking pity on him but eventually learning to understand his point of view. The entire story took place within Joe’s head, meaning that all of his thoughts were as clear to the readers as they were to him. Through this, the message of the book is made very clear. If the book had been based more on action or had taken place outside the main character's own mind, than his opinions might have come off to the readers as subjective and the whole meaning of the story might be lost on some. However, because how intimately readers get to know Joe, it’s extremely difficult not to see things from his point of view or to see his point of view as wrong. Designing a character with such a unique situation was the most effective way for the author the convey ideas. No matter what the viewers opinions on war were, they were forced to empathize with a man who had suffered unspeakable tragedy because of

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