east of eden thesis paper

1131 WordsOct 20, 20085 Pages
In East of Eden, Steinbeck accentuates the theme of the confrontation between good and evil by specifying that some people become evil and others are born evil. But what creates a greater dilemma is what Steinbeck later states. Posterior Steinbeck introduces thou mayest which means that everyone has a choice. Steinbeck implies his belief that Cal and Aron both have the power to make their own choices and change their fate and choose to be good or evil. East of Eden is all about the struggle of this concept. In the novel Cathy is one of the characters that is first born evil and cannot overcome it because of her disinterest to overcome it. Her son Cal however is the one that struggles eternally. Many of the characters' struggles are obvious as they grow and learn of the often harsh and unjust world in which they were placed. Charles is torn between good and evil as a child faced with a father that only loves him after Adam. Likewise, Cal feels that he is inferior to Aron's near perfection and must battle with himself constantly. At a point of the novel Cal is introduced with thou mayest relatively in the same time he confronts his mother. Cal at this point is in utter confusement. He decides to try and change his destiny by being a good person. In broad terms he turns to a life with integrity. That for him was not an easy task because he knows, consciously, that he is naturally an evil person. Steinbeck makes sure this struggle is evident because it is the most representative struggle between good and evil in the novel. In East of Eden, Steinbeck makes Cal the main victim of the struggle between good and evil by emphasizing thou mayest. In East of Eden, The struggle of good and evil is seen constantly throughout the novel in a variety of characters. Cathy, symbolizing Satan, looks for the evil in each person and tries to draw it out and exploit it. Steinbeck says,

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