Compare the use of narrative perspective in "The Veldt" by Ray Bradbury and "Cathedral" by Raymond Carver. How does point of view influence the way in which the reader experiences these stories? Does the point of view of either story ever present problems or difficulties for the reader?

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Narrative perspective considers the questions of "Who is the narrator?" and "What is the narrator's point of view?"

In "The Veldt," the narrator is a third-person omniscient narrator. For example, the narrator speaks in third person about the primary characters George and Lydia, but the readers can understand the narrator's omniscience when he shares George's thoughts. However, the reader assumes that the third-person narrator is not actively involved with the events of the story, but rather exists to tell the story to the reader.

"The Cathedral," on the other hand, features an unnamed first-person narrator who the reader assumes is actively experiencing that which is happening in the story. He shares his intimate thoughts about his experience with the reader.

The two stories have distinct points of view, which provide equally distinct experiences for the reader. Essentially, a reader may feel emotionally connected to the first-person narrator in "The Cathedral" because the experience is like hearing a friend tell a story. In "The Veldt," the reader may feel as if she is watching the story on television and seeing every detail because a third-person omniscient narrator can often provide a seemingly unbiased perspective of the events in a story.

Both points of view come with problems and difficulties that depend on the reader's perspective. For example, "The Cathedral" presents the reader with a narrator with some unlikable qualities, such as jealousy or bitterness; the close relationship that the reader can form with the narrator's intimate thoughts may create discomfort for the reader. On the other hand, the third-person narrator might limit the reader's relationship to the characters, causing the tragedy at the end of "The Veldt" to feel inconsequential, or remove some of the weight of the ethical dilemmas presented in the story.

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