Heller’s Catch-22, is a ironic book by Joseph Heller. It is a tale about the American military pilots on an isle close to Italy by the end of the Second World War. It is an account of how the key character, known as John Yossarian wanted to evade the military and how he tried acting insane so that he could be pronounced out of condition to fly any more military missions. The narrative is a satirical antiwar. The book is composed of “black Humor” for the reason that it satirizes the dreadfulness of the Second World War and depicts how unintelligent a number of the regulations of the militia were. The writer employs a unique blend of satire, surrealism and blends the instance of the tale with flash backs to initial parts of the key character Yossarian’s account. The reason for the use of satire in this book is to describe an antiwar expression, depict how unintelligent a number of the bureaucratic regulations of the military were, to depict how individuals can utilize their capability of controling others and also for the purpose of questioning the implication of insanity.
Heller was a military light operator in reality. He based his tale as well as the characters on actual incidents and persons. He experienced the actual dreadfulness of the War and depicts this in his writing. An instance where he employs irony to describe an anti-war declaration is evident in chapter 17 where he states “The Soldier in white” (Heller 161), where he makes a comparison of dying in fashion in a sanatorium to dying horribly in the war. He utilizes an expressive description style and depicts pathos in the quote, “People give up the ghost with delicacy and taste inside the hospital. There was none of that crude, ugly ostentation about dying that was so common outside the hospital” (Heller 159). In chapter 40, the writer satirized how individuals in power can utilize their power to manipulate others. Here, Colonel Korn appoints Yossarian as an officer. If Yossarian chooses to assume to be fond of the Colonels and praises them, he would be promoted to major, praised and released to go back to his people as superman. But if he declines to do so, Korn makes it clear, he would be court-martialed. The writer overstresses and satirizes the conducts of the commanding officers in his book making them appear more worried concerning their own profession than having to fight the war. This can be depicted from the quote: “You can’t court-martial me for desertion in the face of the enemy. It would make you look bad and you probably couldn’t get a conviction” (Heller 371). In chapter 6, the writer utilizes satire to depict how unintelligent a number of the bureaucratic regulations of the military were and describes what catch 22 implies. Here, Yossarian discovers from Wintergreen, that Colonel added the total voyage missions they had to carry out before they could be released to go home even though the 27 air force headquarters need only 40 combat missions. The headquarters also required that the soldiers abide by the orders even if their leader was corrupt. That’s Catch 22 as described in this quote which employs satire to depict how unintelligent the condition was and hyperbole to describe Yossarian’s reaction when told about catch 22: “Then I can go home, right? I’ve got 48.” “No, you can’t go home” ex-P.F.C. Wintergreen corrected him. “Are you crazy or something?” “Why not?” “Catch 22” (Heller 120).
Another form of satire depicted from the book, is the puzzlement between appearance and realism, whereby the institution pronounces actuality because of appearance and the institute’s own narrow perspective. Examples are plentiful; however 3 are particularly informative, including: the satin-ribbon bombing line, the death of Doc Daneeka as well as the dead body in Yossarian’s tent. When the troop is given the assignment of bombing the grenades deposits at Bologna, the pilots knew that the targets had the repute of being some of the most watched over and dangerous within the region. After the troop received the task, Yossarian came up with a radiant plan. Whilst others prayed for their acquittal, he remembered that the intelligence tent displayed an easel map of Italy whereby a strand of red satin ribbon indicated the uttermost progress of similar troops. Barrages were only to be dropped on targets that were further than that line, which run42 miles southwards of Bologna. Overturn cause and end product, He sneaked to the easel plan one night and moved the red satin band to a position that was in the northern part of Bologna, to indicate that the city was already taken. This therefore meant that the mission had to be called off, for the reason that the allies had captured Bologna. Initially, no one bothered to verify the realism of the situation. The writer took an institutional axiom and overstressed the situation, and twisted it so that the reader can see the stupidity of the premise. The institutional perception is not correct at always. A little suppleness and strong uncertainty can bring the heads to closer to finding out the truth. In this instance, the outcome is not only risk-free but also obliging. Yossarian saved some lives by dislocating the ribbon. He wanted to save his own life by all means, though there are several institutional minds on either side that seemed intended to get rid of him. This can be justified by the quote: “Open your eyes, Clevinger, It doesn’t make a damned bit of difference who wins the war to someone who’s dead” (Heller 122). This implies that the rival is anyone who wants to get you killed, not considering which side one is in.
The death of Doc Daneeka is amusing though closer to serious situations; it expands the satire further than the war zone and into the inhabitant life. Amongst other individual disagreements, Doc is a flight general practitioner who dislikes flying. Because of this, McWatt always added Doc’s name to the traveler’s catalog, cased with his aviation sketch, so that Doc could draw his flight pay without the need of boarding a plane. When McWatt flied into a mount after buzzing the coastline and getting rid of Sampson, Doc was actually standing on the coastline, next to sergeant knight viewing. Within the perspective of the army logic, though, he was on the plane, did not parachute out, which implies that he should have been dead. Forgetting the fact that he was still walking around, attempting to make others believe that he was alive. In compliance with the militia procedure, he was considered dead. Back at his home, his wife was sent a war department telegram which stated that her husband had been killed during their operations. The writer makes fun of the thought that she mourned woefully for almost a whole week, satirically being what was happening on both sides of the ocean. Regardless of the memos from her husband, she was guaranteed by the government that Doc was no more.
The account concerning the deceased body discovered in Yossarian’s tent is satirical. The twisted logic of the military describes its ambiguity. When he arrived at the squad, a new pilot by the name Lieutenant Mudd, got into the operation tent, searching for a tidy tent where he could check in. since the squad had insufficient no of men, he was instantly sent into a terror campaign mission, where unlikely he was killed within two hours of joining the mission. Since, he never signed in officially, the army position was that he was never there.
The key subject of the novel is that catch 22 is some condition that catches an individual up in law that lacks sense. For instance, if Yossarian request to be dismissed off his roles, he must be insane for the reason that only a mad man would want to go on flying operations. The single way Doc could pronounce him insane and unfit to continue flying in accordance with the novel, is if he requested to be beached, which could have shown he was insane. Another instance of catch 22 is a ruling that is illegitimate to read, yet one has to read to familiarize oneself with the law. This is an instance of satire in the narrative. The thought of the novel is a simile for the irrationality of the Second World War and the administration of the army.
Heller, Joseph. Catch-22: a novel. Vol. 4. Simon and Schuster, 1999.