Also, his view of truth looks like a major driving force for the book. It’s a little early to nail down exactly what he thinks, but he clearly takes the concept of pure truth as a joke. He writes humorously about the statement by Miss Faust that God is Love. Even though she can’t define Love, by gone, That’s what God is!
When the doctor is presenting the narrator with the idea of pure research, he notes that the idea makes him howl (I assume with laughter). It’ll be interesting to see how he develops the idea of truth in the novel.
This is my first time with Vonnegut. So far, I find it rather depressing.
He seems to be separating the world into two types of people: The Scientists and the dictators in the Girl Pool. The Scientists lack emotion and the ability to relate to others. Their ambition is natural and comes through in their work. The dictators in the Girl Pool, however, are just the opposite. They have no ambition for knowledge and enjoy social interactions (evidenced by their Christmas party). This is manifested in Miss Pefko saying: “[I’m] dumber than an eight year old, I don’t even know what a charlatan is,” and the fact that she won’t even try to understand the science exhibit, instead just calling it ‘magic.’
The way he views the non-scientists without ambition is what depresses me. It makes for some good dark humor, but it’s also quite condescending.
Also, I can’t help but notice the gender spheres he’s examining. The Scientists seem to be all men, and the Girl Pool, are [well…] women. This seems to be purposeful, as the title of one of the chapters is “Men from Mars,” possibly referencing the old “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus.” He is only writing about one man in this chapter, so it might be a stretch for me to apply it universally. Further, the oldest daughter Angela had to take the motherly figure for the family of men because none of them would step up to the plate, it would seem.
What do you guys think? Did you notice the separation of gender and do you disagree with my analysis?