The motive of rebellion occupies an important place in the novel Catch-22. Closely interwoven with other motifs of the work (insanity, absurdity of the world, and gaining freedom), it serves not only to reveal the image of the protagonist of the novel Yossarian but also the ideological and philosophical problems of the novel. Heller creates the quandary, the disclosure of which occurs as if stepwise – with each new episode, the central motifs of the work acquire an increasingly meaningful fullness and variety of interpretations.
The text chaotic, at first glance, at the end of the work acquires a clear structure. Scattered episodes are lined up into a single event series. As you dive into the atmosphere of Catch -22, the laughter element is reduced to bitter sarcasm and practically disappears in the last chapters. The same event is described more than once, shown through the prism of the life views of different characters. The same facts are given in different situations, each time making the reader look at them from a different angle.
Thus, in the ninth chapter of the novel, the reader learns that after the raid on Avignon, Yossarian behaved extremely indecently: he undressed naked and then stubbornly did not want to dress. At first, his behavior seems to be just eccentricity, buffoonery or, perhaps, an attempt to pretend to be crazy and avoid combat sorties.
The second time Heller returns to this topic in the twenty-first chapter, where Captain Rehn explains that in Yossarian’s plane the gunner was killed. Thus, the reader receives a logical explanation of Yossarian’s behavior.
The third time this incident is described at the end of the work. Only now the author tells in detail the story of the death of Snowden – a colleague and friend of Yossarian who died in his arms. The description of this scene is replete with naturalistic details. The reader can feel every moment and come a little closer to the understanding of the emotional shock Yossarian experienced.
Thus, the reader’s perception of Yossarian is gradually changing and becoming more complicated, which at first appears as a bored joker. And only by the end of the noel, this character appears before us as a denouncer of crimes against morality and humanism committed by officers commanding a military base on the island of Pianosa. Yossarian’s refusal to carry out combat missions from a private conflict with a commander turns into an individualistic, existential riot, and acquires a universal character.
The motive of rebellion occupies an important place in the novel Catch-22. Closely interwoven with other motifs of the work (insanity, absurdity of the world, and gaining freedom), it serves not only to reveal the image of the protagonist of the novel Yossarian but also the ideological and philosophical problems of the novel.