Literary analysis Essay # 1
October 12, 2007
Analysis on Cathedral
All human beings have some type of stereotypical impression, either good or bad, about certain individuals with a specific feature or disability. In the story “Cathedral”, by Raymond Carver, the saying “Do not Judge a book by its cover” becomes a reality to the anonymous male narrator, upon the arrival of the blind man into his house. With the use of symbolism, point of view and irony, carver shows that the unnamed male narrator, who is referred to as ‘‘Bub’’ by the blind man, Robert, grows as a character and drops his conventional prejudice towards blind people.
Using the first person point of view, Carver, lets us get a personal understanding of “The narrator” and the way he sees things through his eyes. We clearly see prejudice in the narrator’s character from the starting gate of the story. In the beginning of the story, the narrator says, “In the movies, the blind moved slowly and never laughed. Sometimes they were led by seeing-eye dogs.” Even before the arrival of the blind man, the narrator has a predetermined idea that blinds are depressed and slow people who are incapable of functioning without their seeing canine. The fact that “The narrator” got his stereotype from the movies and believes in them not only shows how puerile and biased he is but also his ignorance. He also shows his prejudice rude comments by asking Robert, “What side of the train did you sit on?” The narrator lives in a protected home and Robert’s coming over to stay the night is an assault on his stereotypical fort. Therefore he states that, “A blind man in my house was not something I looked forward to.” With the use of the first point of view, the reader understands where the narrator’s stereotypical notions are coming from; where as the use of another point of view would not have made it as intimate. The narrator did not have any change on his outlook, until the Cathedral comes into the...