East Of Eden Analysis

Decent Essays

The biblical story of Cain and Abel also plays a central role in the novel East of Eden. The novel portrays this analogy through the characters of both Charles and Adam, and Cal and Aron. In the Christian Old Testament, The Book of Genesis, Adam and Eve's sons, Cain and Abel, offer sacrifices to God. Because God prefers Abel's gift over Cain's, Cain becomes infuriated and kills his brother in a jealous rage. The characters of Charles and Adam Trask, who share the initials C&A with their biblical forebears, closely follow the Cain and Abel paradigm. Cyrus Trask favors Adam's birthday gift of a puppy over Charles' gift of an expensive knife, and Charles almost beats his brother Adam to death in a jealous rage. However, unlike Charles, Adam becomes the wanderer. Finally, Adam then later moves to California, where he settles and raises his twin sons. His brother, Charles, remains on their Connecticut farm. When Charles dies, he leaves his fortune to his brother: clearly, although jealousy drove them apart, the brotherly bond is still there. Years later, Adam's wife Cathy, or Kate, gives birth to the next generation of Trask brothers, Caleb Trask and Aron Trask; another set of brothers who share the initials C&A. Unsurprisingly, these brothers perpetuate the Cain and Abel ideology. After the birth of their sons, Cathy abandons Adam, and he sinks into such a severe depression that he neglects to even name his children. Samuel suggests to Adam that he name the children Cain and

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