Everything you need to understand or teach Deadeye Dick by Kurt Vonnegut.
The role of accident in human life continues to fascinate Vonnegut. The society tells its young that if they behave in a certain manner, certain things will happen; therefore, one should behave in the socially approved way so that good things will happen to one. In nineteenthcentury America, the genteel tradition assumed that literature should show its readers proper ideals and values. In Europe, critics assumed that art was designed to instruct and improve; Thomas Hardy was condemned for allowing happenstance to rule at crucial points in his novels (such as in Tess of the D'Urbervilles, 1891, when Tess's letter of explanation slides under Angel Clare's door and also under his carpet rather than on top of it, so that he does not receive it; see separate entry). Hardy replied that accident is a determinant of human existence more often than we would like to think.
Vonnegut seems... View more of the Deadeye Dick Summary