The Importance Of Art In Cat's Cradle

Improved Essays
Kennedy 1
Jasmine Kennedy
Writing 121
Period 5
11/1/16

The Imitation "What is behind your eyes holds more power than what is in front of them" (Gary Zukav). What one might see, physically, hold less influence on life than one 's perception. In his novel, Cat’s Cradle, Vonnegut uses art to show his readers how it can hide the truth, show the meaning in life, and how everyone perceives things differently. Sometimes life imitates that of art. "That was one of Hoenikker’s hobbies”, said Faust, “What was?" "Photographing how cannonballs are stacked on different courthouse lawns. Apparently how they 've got them stacked in that picture is very unusual"(57). Oftentimes, life imitates art, in its positives, but also in its detriments.
…show more content…
Vonnegut writes, "Father needs some kind of book to read to people who are dying or in terrible pain. I don 't suppose you 've written anything like that"(153). In Cat’s Cradle, art is medicine for the terminal, but, excluding health, life is an inescapable terminal condition for all. There are only two directions to take; up or down. Vonnegut uses art to portray life as not something to fear or slide by, but to revel in, like one does with art. Art has the power to alter one 's perception of reality and life. This jeopardizes the literal truth that life harbors. Vonnegut writes, "Well if you ever do do that book, you better make my father a saint, because that 's what he was"(112). Arts lies can influence how people view reality. Angela 's proposal to John suggest that John has the power within his piece of literature, to shift and alter Hoenikker’s persona into whatever he wants. Often times people underestimate the effect of art on the minds of human logic and opinion. Not only does art deter people from their path of logic, but it can predict what path humanity will take. Vonnegut writes, “the novel was about the end of the world in the year 2000, and the name of the book was 2000 A.D. it told about how mad scientists made a terrific bomb that wiped out the whole world"(9). This book in Vonnegut 's novel, foreshadows the inevitable deadly effect that …show more content…
Every human 's thought process is so different, and when combined with art, there are an uncountable amount of opinions, perceptions and views of one piece. Vonnegut writes, "I don 't think it 's very nice," Angela complained. "I think it 's ugly, but I don 't know anything about modern art. Sometimes I wish Newt would take some lessons, so he could know for sure if he was doing something or not"(168). Angela cannot see that there is no right way to “do” art. Like life, art has many different perceptions and paths to take. Angela cannot understand that the beauty of art is not that one is able to understand it fully, but that one cannot, therefore contemplating the meaning of everything, promoting a constant personal growth. Vonnegut writes, “ I was grateful to Newt for calling it to my attention, for the quotation captured in a couplet the paradox of Bokononist thought, the heartbreaking necessity of lying about reality, and the heartbreaking impossibility of lying about it” (284). Newt and Jonah are on their way to get some paint for Newt to use, amidst the end of the world. Art and the Bokononist religion, shows that though a realistic view is often necessary, in times of an unchanging path, reality is not what saves, but art and its many

Related Documents

  • Superior Essays

    In the novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, characters like Lord Henry, Dorian and Sibyl confuse and even manipulate the nature of art, who ultimately are convinced by their own interpretations of a work of art, base their life on that interpretation, and so become troubled when they are exposed to reality because they do not know how to handle it. All of this not only leads to numerous tragedies and avoidable deaths, it also shines a light on the souls of the characters, who are spectators of the work of art in the novel, to the readers, the spectators of Oscar Wilde’s…

    • 967 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Germany would be capable of testing a weapon by mid-1943 and the first functioning bomb ready to be used in war would come late 1943. Hitler would then secretly load a nuclear bomb onto a Ju 390 and send it to Moscow as quickly as possible. Hitler then detonates the 10 kiloton bomb 1,000 feet above Moscow on February 29th, 1944, and absolutely demolishes the city. The effects are then observed by Russia and reported to the Allies. Russia has completely lost Moscow and immediately pulls to its borders and defends with what little government and military left.…

    • 1230 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Manhattan Project Effects

    • 1314 Words
    • 6 Pages

    Unsatisfied, the U.S took an even greater look into their research, in hopes of constructing a more destructible weapon. Years later, when Harry Truman was president, he wanted to abolish the Japanese. August 6, 1945, he did just that. The city of Hiroshima suffered a great loss. An atomic bomb was released upon them, instantaneously killing approximately 80,000 people.…

    • 1314 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    With these bombings, thousands of civilians were, brutally without warning, killed in an attempt to end the war. A new nuclear weapon was introduced to the world which changed the way wars were fought. The ash cloud produced could be seen from miles away: “As the first mushroom floated…

    • 1004 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    From a 21st century perspective there is a lot to consider when discussing the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan. When choosing to bomb an entire nation to shambles to protect personal interests one has to look at all the accounts associated with it. While the united stated may try to rationalize the reasoning behind its actions, the bombing of Japan during World War II will never be justified. The moral obligations of the United States to the rest of the world are too high for the United States to use its powers for such evil. One of the proposed reasons for dropping the bomb was its effectiveness in ending the war.…

    • 1012 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Moynihan, Denis. “Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 70 Years After the Atomic Bombs Were Dropped.” Democracy Now. August 6, 2015. October 23, 2015.) These words, originally of the Hindu scripture, accurately manifest the realities of harnessed nuclear power; humanity is her own worst enemy.…

    • 1124 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Basil is the artist who has put too much of himself in his art and suffers the consequences. When discussing his painting of Dorian Gray, Basil explains that he must not display the painting because “I will not bare my soul to their shallow, prying eyes. My heart shall never be put under their microscope. There is too much of myself in the thing, Harry--too much of myself!” (Wilde 13). After creating the painting of Dorian Gray, Basil realizes that he has put too much of his personal feelings and emotions into the painting.…

    • 1171 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    What were the motives behind the United States decision to use atomic bombs against Japan and what arguments have been made against it? WWII was fought between the Allied powers composed of USA, Britain and the Soviet Union, and the Axis Powers, comprised of Germany, Italy and Japan, and was one of the deadliest conflicts in all of history. The vast amount of casualties on both sides totalled to 6,000,000 deaths – about 3% of the global population in the 1940s. The use of atomic bombs was to put an end to the war. Leading up to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Manhattan Project influenced the course of history.…

    • 1181 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    People have to see the importance of projecting the good of our shadows because those are the golden qualities that we need to show. Johnson himself writes, “We forget that in falling in love, we must also come to terms with what we find annoying and distasteful –even downright intolerable—in the other and also in ourselves” (64). In other words, Johnson believes one cannot see one thing and not the other. One must look at another as well as themselves realistically. Johnson complicates matters further when he writes,” Though no one notices at the time, in-love-ness obliterates the humanity of the beloved” (63).…

    • 819 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Whereas Dedalus thinks in the grand conceptual language of “destiny” and “social religious orders”, for David the act of becoming an artist is dreary and can only happen if it flows from his positions within social and religious orders. Ultimately, David Copperfield, through its message and connection to Dickens 's own life, works as a kuntslerroman because it is a bildungsroman. Placing fiction as an aspect of moral and life and development allows Dickens to counter ideas of solo scriptura and use the novel as a form to demonstrate development. It is this view of the artists as a type of moral guide, which drives Hardy 's remark about David 's strangeness. To modern readers whose ideas of the artist have been so radically changed by Joycean ideas he is indeed strange.…

    • 1650 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays