"It's tragic to have sight but no vision." - Hellen Keller This quote applies to Raymond Carver's story "Cathedral", which is about a sighted man who has no spiritual vision and a Blind Man with spiritual enlightenment. By the end of the story the Narrator's third eye is opened with help from the Blind Man. The Narrator is a very neurotic man. We know that the Narrator is an isolated person based on his own wife stating that he has no friends.
There is a significant theme of “Cathedral”: a narrator who is ignorant to blindness while being oblivious to his own limitations in sight. While the narrator can physical see with his eyes but does not realize the limitations he has placed on himself, and how those hinder him from seeing or wanting anything better in life. Being able to distinguish “the voice we hear (the narrator's) may not be the same as the eyes we see through (the perspective)” (. The story is truly about experiences or existences beyond the limitations of physical things. What Robert has that the narrator lacks is a sight into the wonder of things, the potential for acceptance in humanity, and the desire that can make one truly alive and free even if one is held back
A Blind Man's Perspective Can you imagine a life without sight? In the short story Cathedral, the readers come across a man named Robert who lives with such blindness. Robert is the friend of the protagonist's wife and stays at their house after visiting some family. This story focuses on the thoughts and actions of the protagonist who is only referred to as the husband. He starts the story with a brief overview of his wife's past and how she met Robert.
What would one expect to be the attitude of a man whose wife has just invited, what seems a lot like a past love interest, to come stay with them? It is such a character as the narrator that Raymond Carver portrays in his famous story “Cathedral”. Said visitor is a blind man who goes by the name of Robert. The narrator, who’s name we never learn, shows no sympathy towards the man throughout the story, even after finding out about the loss of his beloved wife. It isn’t until the two men come together to sketch a Cathedral that the narrator is able to change his perspective after “seeing” what he couldn’t “see” prior to this epiphanic experience.
In the story Cathedral, the narrator is the husband of a wife who has kept in touch with her old boss from years past. The boss is Robert, a blind man whose wife has just passed away. After his wife’s death, Robert was invited to visit and stay with an ex-employee. The husband doesn’t want the blind man to stay over at his house because he is jealous of Robert. The husband’s wife has kept in touch with the blind man for the last 10 years.
The narrator attempts to describe a cathedral to Robert, but is unable to do so. His perception of the world around him is very shallow and superficial. He sees the surface of things, but he does not see deeply. When Robert asks him to show him a cathedral by drawing together, he finds a deeper connection. When Robert has him close his eyes, the connection goes deeper still and he finally realize that it is he himself that has been
Christian is deeply goal oriented. Because reaching the Celestial City has a life-or-death urgency for him, he has little time or energy for lesser matters. Even his family shrinks nearly to insignificance in his mind as soon as he leaves for his journey. He never mentions his wife or children to his travel companions. At the Palace Beautiful, he shows some emotion when one of the four mistresses of the house inquires about his family, but he does not bring up the subject himself, nor does he return to it later.
A Cathedral is a place for people to go and worship, to connect with God. By drawing the Cathedral the narrator is in some ways also making a connection. For the first time, he appears to be able to see. The narrator's ignorance and preconceptions fade away because he sees that although Robert has the gift of knowing and understanding people. There is also a sense of irony at the end of the story.
In “Cathedral” by Raymond Carver the short story based on three essential characters the narrator, his wife and the blind man. In this story the narrator who is biased and drastically changed when the blind man opens his eyes, makes him realize the importance of his life. The story begins by saying, "This blind man, an old friend of my wife, was on his way to spend the night” the blind man visits the narrator and his wife after his own wife, Beulah, dies. The blind man and the narrator’s wife are good friends since ten years as the narrator’s wife had worked for him last summer. He was not pleased about the blind man’s visit to his home.