D.P by Kurt Vonnegut and Whoever Was Using This Bed by

Created by: Laura Burke, David
Boudreau, Jesse Gomez, and
Jessica Gunter
Importance of Understanding
Your Heritage
 “See the little sparrow with the broken leg.
Oh poor, brave little thing…” (p. 164)
 “Where’s your home? Said the lieutenant in
German. “Over more water than you’ve ever
seen.”” (p. 168)
-refers to boy being displaced and
how he is isolated from his heritage. He is
lost overseas and cannot get back.
 Joe is a young American boy who lives at an orphanage in
Germany. He dreams about his family. Peter told him his
father was an American soldier. Joe asks one of the nuns if it
is true, but the nun tries to encourage him to not listen to
Peter because he likes to make up stories. Suddenly when Joe
thinks he sees his father the nun tries to divert his attention.
 Joe sneaks out at night to find the soldier. When he does he
finds a whole camp. The soldiers adore Joe. They give him
chocolate and little trinkets, but they know they have to take
him back to the orphanage. Immediately when the lieutenant
tells Joe they were going to take him back Joe holds onto the
sergeant and refuses to let go. In the end the only way for the
sergeant to convince Joe to stay at the orphanage was to
promise to come back for him.
Joe –
He wants to feel accepted. In the end he exaggerates his story for the rest of
the orphanage and they love him for it. Since he didn’t have chance to be
with the army, he must be accepted somewhere else.
He is a dreamer who is full of hope.
He wants to connect with his heritage. When the townsfolk give him the
name “Joe” because he is African American, he accepts this name over his
German one.
He is the oldest child at the orphanage.
He likes to think of himself as the wisest.
Very kind towards Joe.
 D.P. – Displaced Person
 Sparrow symbolizes Joe
 The plot of the story is the search for hope. Joe wants
to be connected with his heritage. When he finds
people that look like him he doesn’t want to leave
them because he feels like he belongs with him. He
sees the soldiers as his family. The only way he let’s
go is when the sergeant promises he will come back
for him. He promised to take him back home across
the water.
 Importance of Accepting Decisions Regarding
Life and Death
-Both Iris and her husband have to decide if
they want to have their plug pulled. They have
conflicting decisions but must accept each
others. They both talk about death and health
problems and how they don’t want to die yet, but
neither of them makes a move to change their
actions. Nobody opens a window, or gets up to
make coffee. They are simply accepting their
decisions in life, and not changing fate.
Two Quotes:
 “Good,” she says. But neither of us make a
move.” (p. 435)
 “But while I’m trying to tell all this woman,
while I’m trying to make myself understood,
my wife moves quickly and bends over, and
that’s it.” (p. 443)
 Husband and wife are awakened by a woman with a
wrong number. While they are awake they decide to
talk about death because Iris read an article in the
newspaper about a guy took a shotgun and forced the
nurses to take his father off the life-support machine.
This conversation makes the speaker feel that his
relationship with his wife is deepening.
 Iris = wants her husband to pull the plug on her
 Husband = doesn’t want the plug pulled on him
 Husband= protective of Iris and jealous of other men
in her dreams. Afraid of losing his new wife because
he understands how easy it is to leave, like he left his
wife and kids. Eventually tells her what she wants
to hear to he can keep her.
 They are both lazy. They talk about quieting smoking,
but they continue to smoke.
 Messed up sheets-illustrate the messed up lives of
the couple. They are hiding under the sheets while
talking about death, yet beds are supposed to be safe.
 Phone calls at midnight-Way to make them wake up
to the world, and reality that they might die one day
and what would happen. 3am gives them the perfect
time for odd talks and discussions.
 At the very end “The line goes dead, and I can’t hear
anything” depicting Iris pulling the plug on the phone.
This lady has been constantly calling throughout the
story, and making the characters aware of certain
issues. At her last call, Iris illustrates how she wants
her husband to pull the plug on her, by pulling the cord.
 After the couple leave the bed all day, the tend to do
things in a more hurried fashion. They are hyper-aware
of their actions, and how they could die at any minute.
After being lethargic and not trying to do anything about
changing themselves in the past, they are scared and
hurried to things with their lives.

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