In “The Cathedral” by Raymond Carver, a man named Robert is coming to spend the night at the narrator’s house. Robert is a friend of the narrator’s wife who happens to be blind, which doesn’t sit well with the narrator. Robert and his wife have a ten year relationship which started with her working for him. Since then they’ve stayed in contact by sending audiotapes to each other. When Robert reaches the house, the narrator is a bit uncomfortable. The first reason being because the man is blind, and secondly he’s not really sure what to say to a man who has a past with his wife. Soon after, the narrator sees that Robert isn’t initially what he thought the man would be like. Robert’s suggestion for the narrator to close his eyes while drawing the cathedral creates a different perspective for him, which allows him to realize it is he who is limited and cannot see, not Robert.
In almost every story there is a meaning, whether that meaning is obvious or not is up to the readers’ interpretations. In some stories, that meaning hides behind a character, how that person acts, thinks, or express themselves and how they change throughout resembling growth. In Raymond Carver’s “The Cathedral”, the unnamed husband narrators the tale of his wife’s old blind friend Robert coming to visit after not seeing each other for years. They had remained in contact through audiotapes, but the husband seems to not understand the significance of their relationship, showing distaste with the visit for the majority of the story, due to his uncomfortableness. In this story, the writer displays his tale and its morals; by using the narration of the husband; Carver shows that there comes to be more meaning behind this bitter man that meets the eye, which argues the fact that perhaps this unlikable narrator is truly the antihero.
The blind man and the narrator differ on their views of the world. The blind man takes advantage of life by making friends and learning new things. The narrator sees the world superficially. He does not find deeper meanings in life and values appearances over lessons. Towards the end that changes. Once the narrator views a picture from the blind visitor’s perspective, he sees the world in a new way. “My eyes were still closed. I was in my house. I knew that. But I didn’t feel like I was inside
Cathedral is a short story written by Raymond Carver in 1983, about a prejudiced man who meets a disabled man. Through “Cathedral,” it becomes clear that the visit of the blind man Robert in the narrator’s house may change the narrator from stereotyping to accepting disabled people; this illustrates Carver’s theme which displays human insensitivity through the narrator’s reluctance because of fear, then acceptance, and finally understanding of Robert.
In Raymond Carver's "Cathedral," the husband's view of blind men is changed when he encounters his wife's long time friend, Robert. His narrow minded views and prejudice thoughts of one stereotype are altered by a single experience he has with Robert. The husband is changed when he thinks he personally sees the blind man's world. Somehow, the blind man breaks through all of the husband's jealousy, incompetence for discernment, and prejudgments in a single moment of understanding.
In the beginning the narrator is un-named, we read the story as thoughts within his mind. His actions gives-off a sense of jealousy. He’s bothered by the former relationship the blind-man and his wife has had in the past. He is blunt and honest with (us) in telling how he feels about the situation. “I wasn’t enthusiastic about his visit. He was no one I knew. And his being blind bothered me.” “A blind man in my house was not something I looked forward to.” The narrator gives us the introduction to the life event. He tells us about his wife and how she met the blind-man. In short, she formally worked for him, reading him things when she lived in Seattle for a summer. The narrator mentioned when the blind-man touched around his wife face and her current marriage with her childhood sweetheart. Her husband at the time was in the military –industry, which caused her to have to move a lot. She and the blind-man kept in touch by sending voice recorded
Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man is a story about an unnamed African American man trying to find a place for himself in white America. Throughout his life, he believes that his whole existence solely depends on recognition and approval of white people, which stems from him being taught to view whites as superior. The Invisible Man strives to correspond to the values and expectations of the dominate social group, but he is continuously unable to merge his socially imposed role as a black man with his internal concept of identity. In the end, he finally realizes that it is only up to himself to create his own identity without depending on the acceptance of whites, but on his own acceptance of himself. Invisible Man represents the critical
Upon an initial surface reading of page 158 of Ralph Ellison’s 1952 novel Invisible Man, one could be lead to believe that it was simply a crowded subway and Invisible Man was simply pressed up against a lady who does not take good care of herself. However, if one were to read this much more closely and actually figure out the context presented in this passage, one could see that Invisible Man is being held against his will by circumstances surrounding his race (African-American). Reading this passage in such a way, one would be able to understand how being packed next to someone who is unappealing could relate to racial or ethnic oppression.
The narrator “stared hard at the shot of the cathedral on the TV. How could I even begin to describe it? But say my life depended on it. Say my life was being threatened by an insane guy who said I had to do it or else” (Carver 36). The narrator describes the event before just fine, with the skeletons and people dressed as the devil, but he struggles with the cathedral. It was unobtainable for him to do it, he was speechless. This is key because the narrator says he couldn't even do it if his life depended on it. The narrator could see the cathedral but could not describe it to Robert because he did not understand it. Not until he closed his eyes could he describe the cathedral, and start to close this gap between understanding what he can see versus understanding the meaning behind it. He starts to realize he's always been wrong about things and his positions which led to his epiphany of change. Carver uses his writing to paint a picture of the fulfillment of working together. The narrator says “he found my hand, the hand with the pen. He closed his hand over my hand. “Go ahead, bub, draw,” he said. “Draw. You’ll see. I’ll follow along with you. It’ll be okay. Just begin now like I’m telling you.You’ll see. Draw,” the blind man said” (Carver 37).
“Cathedral” written by Raymond Carver is a short story that unfolds as a first-person narrative of the main character named Bub. The story beautifully depicts the process of an individual who transforms from a person with lack of knowledge and ignorant towards knowledgeable soul, due to an encounter with his wife’s blind friend Robert, to an individual that is enlightened. The cathedral, in this story, is a mere subject brought up at the end of this story which becomes the object of his enlightenment. “Cathedral,” tells a tale of Bub who through a blind man receives an eye-opening experience. The narrator starts off as intolerable, but towards the end of the story, with the assistance of a blind man makes him open-minded. He is clobbered
The author of Invisible Man, Ralph Ellison, was born March 1st, 1914, and died April 16, 1994. He was born in Oklahoma City and named after Ralph Waldo Emerson, a famous journalist and poet. When Ellison was 3, his father died of a work-related accident, leaving his mother to care for him and his younger brother. As a young boy, he always wanted to major in music, and he went to Tuskegee University to become a composer and performer of music. The summer before his senior year in college, Ellison went to New York City in hopes of earning enough money to pay the tuition fee. However, similarly to the narrator in Invisible Man, his plans failed and he never returned to college. While living in New York City, he met Richard Wright. He began writing, and after World War II, he began writing what would become Invisible Man.
In literature, the prologue of a novel often consists of an opening speech or introduction that establishes the stage for important events later to come. However, in Ralph Ellison’s novel, The Invisible Man, the prologue serves as the beginning of the end, in preparation for an epilogue that revisits the narrator’s original inner conflict at the end of a personal narrative. Situated in a hidden underground cellar, the main character, the Invisible Man recounts the journey of his naive youth from the American south to the seemingly optimistic north in Harlem, New York. However, through several unjust experiences, the Invisible Man doubts the possibility of hope and action, withdrawing from society by hiding in recluse and writing a
The story “Cathedral” demonstrates that lack of sight does not necessarily prevent one from perceiving things as they are, or live their life to the fullest. In the story, a middle-age blind man, who is a friend to the narrator’s wife, and used to be her boss at one point, visits the narrator and his wife. The narrator has never interacted with blind people before, and all he knew about blind people was what he had seen on television. Blind people are stereotypically portrayed on television as slow moving, dull people, who never laugh. Based on this perception, the narrator was reluctant to meet the blind man and doubted whether they were going to connect. This is evident when the narrator states, “I wasn’t enthusiastic about his visit. He was no one I knew. And his being blind bothered me” (Carver 1).
In the last part of the story, after the wife has fallen asleep between the two men on the sofa and both the husband and blind man have smoked pot, the husband then turns on the TV. On the TV, there is a cathedral. The blind man has never had a cathedral described to him and asks the husband to describe one to him. The husband goes on and starts trying to describe the beautiful building to the blind man but thinks that he is not doing a very good job. The blind man then says, “Hey,
The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison is about a black man struggling to find his identity in 1930s America. This book is called The Invisible Man not because the narrator is literally invisible, but because people only see him through a stereotypical and prejudice point of view. In this book we follow the narrator’s life as a college student, a worker at a paint plant, and a member of a shady political organization called the Brotherhood. The book begins with the narrator claiming he is an invisible man. He says that he lives underground, steals electricity from the Monopolated Light & Power Company, burns 1369 light bulbs at once, and listens to Louis Armstrong on a phonograph. The narrator says he is underground so he can write his life story.