Breakfast of Champions

Breakfast of Champions


Kurt Vonnegut

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Breakfast of Champions: Chapter 6 Summary & Analysis

Back in Midland City, Dwayne puts the Plymouth into drive. He drives past his Pontiac dealership to the new Holiday Inn, which Dwayne happens to own as well, in partnership with a few other businessmen. Dwayne also owns “three Burger Chefs, too, and five coin-operated car washes, and pieces of the Sugar Creek Drive-In Theatre, Radio Station WMCY, the Three Maples Par-Three Golf Course, and seventeen hundred shares of common stock in Barryton, Limited, a local electronics firm.”
Dwayne is the embodiment of capitalist greed, and his ownership of a ridiculous number of business reflects this. Dwayne is clearly motivated by the possibility of never-ending profits, and he owns multiple businesses to achieve more wealth.
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As Dwayne looks down over Midland City from the roof of the Holiday Inn, he doesn’t recognize the lights below. He had been born and adopted here but the city looks foreign. “Where am I?” Dwayne asks. He forgets everything—even that his wife, Celia, has committed suicide “by eating Drāno,” and that his son, George, is “a notorious homosexual” named Bunny. “Where am I?” Dwayne asks again. 
Celia’s suicide and Bunny’s sexuality serve as triggers that exacerbate Dwayne’s mental illness because society has similarly stigmatized suicide and homosexuality. The judgement of others only serves to compound Dwayne’s stress, and in this way, Vonnegut is openly critical of these opinions. 
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