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by Kurt Vonnegut

Slaughterhouse-Five Chapter 2, Section 7 Summary

  • When Billy's first letter is published in the paper, he's working on the second one.
  • The second letter tells the world that, when a person dies, he only appears to die. But none of those moments of his life are ever lost. Every moment is eternal.
  • It's an illusion that we experience time as a progression from one moment to the next.
  • When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, he thinks the person isn't doing so well at that particular moment. But all of the moments before then, the dead person has been just fine.
  • So whenever Billy hears that someone is dead, he just says what the Tralfamadorians say: "So it goes" (2.7.3).

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