Friday, October 21, 2016
"'You have a morbid aversion to dying. You probably resent the fact that you're at war and might get your head blown off any second.'
'I more than resent it, sir. I'm absolutely incensed.'
'You have deep-seated survival anxieties. And you don't like bigots, bullies, snobs or hypocrites. Subconsciously there are many people you hate.'
'Consciously, sir, consciously.' Yossarian corrected in an effort to help. 'I hate them consciously.' 'You're antagonistic to the idea of being robbed, exploited, degraded, humiliated or deceived. Misery depresses you. Ignorance depresses you. Persecution depresses you. Violence depresses you. Slums depresses you. Greed depresses you. Crime depresses you. Corruption depresses you. You know, it wouldn't surprise me if you're a manic-depressive!'
'Yes, sir. Perhaps I am.'
'Don't try to deny it.'
'I'm not denying it, sir,' said Yossarian, pleased with the miraculous rapport that finally existed between them. 'I agree with all you've said.'"
The above is just one example of the brilliant writing in Catch-22. I knew going into this book that Heller's writing style was a dividing factor for fans and critics of his famous first novel. Thankfully I never read this book in high school since I would have hated Heller's non-lineal narrative back then. The novel's satirical elements would have probably gone over my head when I was sixteen but it's what solidifies this book as a new favorite now. War can be a tricky subject to approach, but Heller maneuvers it with such non-glorified honesty that he makes you understand just how frustratingly powerless and horrifying it is to be caught in the middle.