“Cathedral” is a short and warm story written by Raymond Carver. The author portrays the story in the first person narrative. Carver presents the interaction between an unnamed couple and a blind man by the name of Robert, who is visiting them. The story is told by the husband, the narrator, who is a prejudiced, jealous, and insecure man with very limited awareness of blindness. This theme is exposed through Carver’s description of the actions of the narrator whose lack of knowledge by stereotyping a blind man.
In his contemporary short story, “Cathedral,” Raymond Carver tells the story of an unnamed narrator, his wife, and an old friend, a blind man named Robert. Robert has come to visit the narrator’s wife, who is quite excited to see this man whom she hasn’t seen in ten years, yet the same can’t be said of the narrator who is noticeably and vocally uncomfortable about his visit. The story is told through the narrator’s first person point of view, showcasing his thoughts and the events that take place when Robert comes to visit. Carver highlights the theme of having the ability to see, but not truly seeing, through his use of colloquial language, and creation of relatable characters. “Cathedral” begins with the narrator informing the audience
“His being blind bothered me” (Carver 1). In Raymond Carver’s short story Cathedral, Carver establishes an ignorant narrator, who is dependent on alcohol and fixated upon physical appearance; he juxtaposes the narrator to a blind man who sees with his heart rather than his eyes. Through indirect characterization, Carver contrasts the narcissistic narrator to the intuitive blind man while utilizing sight as a symbol of emotional understanding. He establishes the difference between looking and seeing to prove that sight is more than physical.
Conflict is the essence of any literary fiction. The main goal of an author is to tell a story that keeps the reader interested. At the story’s core, conflict is the momentum of happening and change and is crucial on all levels for delivering information and building characterization as well as building the story itself. Conflict is the source of change that engages a reader and keeps them interested. In a story, conflict and action does what description and telling of feelings and situations do not. Narrated in the first person, Raymond Carver’s “Cathedral” is bound to unfold due to the thoughts and feelings of one of the main characters, the husband. Expectedly, the conflict revolves around him and the way he responds to the conflict leads
The protagonist in Raymond Carver’s essay “Cathedral” is the husband of the wife in the story. From the start he was never too thrilled to be having the blind man stay with him in his home. He felt uncomfortable and he also had no idea what to expect because he had never been around a blind man before. After his wife falls asleep the man seems to slowly start to have a more open mind when it comes to the blind man. They start to talk and connect.
In Raymond Carver’s “Cathedral,” written in 1983, the author points out that empathy and perspective are the only way to truly experience profound emotion. The narrator is struggling is sucked into his own comfort zone, he drowns his dissatisfaction on life, marriage, and job in alcohol. A man of limited awareness breaks through his limitations by socializing with a blind man. Despite Roberts physical limitations, he is the one who saved narrator from himself and helped him to find the ones vies of the world.
Readers can appreciate the subtly placed examples of dramatic and situational irony throughout the works of Carver. Cathedral by Raymond Carver is the story about a blind man, Robert, who visits a husband and wife in their home. One would expect the husband
Within modern day society, there are many people who have eyesight cannot “see.” This sad truth is reflected within the husband who cannot connect with his wife because he displays a lack of insight. As the protagonist of the short story Cathedral, the husband had to undergo a certain change within the story in order to connect with his wife, who actually tends to be the antagonist. Through the usage of the husband’s language, behavior, and interaction with other characters–the author, Raymond Carver proves that it is possible to “see” once one accepts change.
In Cathedral, the speaker at first is very uncomfortable with the idea of having a blind man stay at his house. He is a very shallow person, never gives much thought to anything, and he does not try to connect to his wife on a deeper level. At the end of the story, the blind man and the speaker are alone, and the blind man asks him what a cathedral looks like. The speaker says that he cannot describe it, that he does not believe in God, so a cathedral would not have much importance to him. The blind man then has the speaker draw what a cathedral looks like, and he placed his hand on top of the speaker’s while he drew.
Characterized as a social place where people meet, the cathedral becomes a symbol of the husband's ability to overcome his loneliness and his inability to communicate. The last few sentences of the story paint a picture of someone coming to the realization that being blind can be more than just a physical limitation. A person can be blinded to the feelings of others and the problems that can affect our everyday life, yet through interaction and tolerance an individual can find both themselves and an awareness for people around
Raymond Carver’s “Cathedral” is narrated by a man who is unhappy that his wife is friends with a blind man. He has not ever known any blind people in his life and he has many ill conceived conceptions about them and how they perceive the world. The narrator unfolds the story slowly to show his own lack of perception with regard to his wife and the world around him. He comes to realize that perhaps the man that cannot see with his eyes can “see” reality better than he can.
In the works of Literature an epiphany is “a moment of profound insight or revelation by which a character’s life is greatly altered” (24). In the short story “Cathedral” Raymond Carver uses epiphany to draw on the theme, blinded views can alter someone’s behavior. On the realistic level, epiphany advances the plot and character development because they are the basis for the story’s central action. They also help define the narrator and play a vital part in revealing the story’s theme. The following changes in the character’s views have shown an evident development.
Conflict, defined as the opposition of two or more forces, remains the key ingredient in great stories. Conflict can be conveyed through an internal or external source, as well as one of these following forms: man vs. man, man vs. nature, man vs. supernatural, and man vs. himself. In Raymond Carver’s short story, Cathedral, the conflict is clearly man vs. himself. The narrator severely lacks sensitivity and can best be described as self-centered, superficial, and egotistical. While his actions certainly speak to these points, his misunderstanding of the people and relationships presented to him in this story present his biggest flaw. His wife’s friend, Robert, is physically blind. Though, I declare the narrator to be the one who cannot clearly
Austin Barrett Gosia Gabrys English 1110.02 27 Oct 2015 Analysis of Cathedral The narrator of Raymond Carver's short story Cathedral starts by saying, "This blind man, an old friend of my wife's, he was on his way to spend the night. "The narrator continues to say that after the blind man's wife died while visiting her relatives in nearby Connecticut, he had called the narrator's wife to arrange a visit of old friends. The narrator admits he is not excited about this man coming to visit his wife.
In the world of literature, stories are often released for the purpose of social commentary or even to reflect on the authors past in a that its similar to an autobiography. Raymond Carver is a unique author often creating short stories that are of his own personal life through fictional characters that embody the turmoil he has gone through and social commentary on social issues. This is seen especially in his 1981 short story, Cathedral with a revised version being released in 1983, but we are gonna focus on the 1981 original. Cathedral’s plot centers around a blind man named Robert who after his wife dies, he lives with his departed wife’s friend who soon alongside her husband, helps teach Robert to learn a new way of seeing. The plot of the story while simple, is very complex under the surface, being a plot that is about three people who is dependent on each other and the connection that develops.