Cathedral Questions and Answers

Cathedral

I would argue that the cathedral in Raymond Carver's great story symbolizes the discovery of empathy, the discovery of common ground, and the loss of inhibitions. At the start of the story, the...

Latest answer posted October 7, 2020, 10:43 am (UTC)

3 educator answers

Cathedral

The narrator at the end of this story experiences an epiphany which does seem, despite the unemotional tone of Carver's text, to indicate that his outlook on life might be different from this...

Latest answer posted February 3, 2021, 11:15 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

A good thesis for Raymond Carver's "Cathedral" can be that a person can share meaningful experiences with those from whom he least expects anything. The narrator, the husband of a sensitive woman,...

Latest answer posted October 30, 2016, 11:58 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

The narrator's preconceived notions about blind people are dispelled once he actually meets Robert in person. Before Robert's arrival, the narrator is extremely closed-minded. It is unlikely the...

Latest answer posted September 7, 2018, 11:06 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

If we examine the instances when Robert performs this curious behaviour, we can see that this gesture is something that indicates Robert's need to reassure himself that he is OK. The beard is...

Latest answer posted November 20, 2011, 6:54 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

The tone of the unnamed first-person narrator in Raymond Carver’s short story “The Cathedral” (1981) masks itself as jealousy and contempt but has more to do with emotional numbness and the...

Latest answer posted September 22, 2019, 6:34 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

The theme of communication is rather sophisticated in "Cathedral." On the most basic level, Robert is able to communicate with others in a very meaningful way despite being cut off from the sense...

Latest answer posted March 8, 2019, 12:44 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

The main theme of “Cathedral” is that human connection occurs in various forms and degrees. The characters illustrate that people have different ways and abilities to connect and relate to others;...

Latest answer posted January 29, 2020, 5:51 am (UTC)

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Cathedral

For Robert, the blind man in Carver’s “Cathedral", the cathedral symbolizes a whole different dimension of existence. Though blind, he is able to achieve a remarkably powerful vision through the...

Latest answer posted July 23, 2020, 12:35 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

Cathedral

The action of this story is set in the narrator’s home, a suburban house in the USA. Conversations take place between the narrator and his wife in their living room and in the kitchen; and between...

Latest answer posted October 7, 2019, 6:09 am (UTC)

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Cathedral

The narrator freely admits in the first paragraph of Raymond Carver's short story that his impression of what blind people are like came from he movies. He perceived blind people to be slow movers,...

Latest answer posted November 27, 2018, 7:48 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

We learn that the narrator has never met a blind person. He says the idea of Robert's disability bothers him. Rather than accepting Robert, he is made uncomfortable by his disability. He is fixated...

Latest answer posted October 15, 2019, 11:49 am (UTC)

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Cathedral

It is clear that the narrator initially feels very awkward to have a blind man in his house and also to be watching television with him. Of course, Robert is unable to see, and although the history...

Latest answer posted May 6, 2013, 6:59 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

Figurative language uses words or techniques to communicate more meaning than the literal words themselves. Carver gives the narrator a down-to-earth voice by having him use slang. An example would...

Latest answer posted October 13, 2018, 10:11 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

In "Cathedral" by Raymond Carver, there are many references to religion and faith throughout the story. However, the cathedral itself is not brought up until near the end of the story. Prior to...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2019, 8:13 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

There is another reason the wife keeps asking Robert if he'd like to go to bed: she is displeased that her husband (the narrator) is sharing dope (cannabis) with Robert: My wife came back...

Latest answer posted May 8, 2018, 3:10 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

Cathedral

The primary character of Raymond Carver’s story is the unnamed narrator. He is a dynamic character but not necessarily round. Carver offers very limited backstories for the characters, so the...

Latest answer posted July 28, 2019, 3:44 am (UTC)

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Cathedral

Robert can see much the narrator cannot. The narrator was very close-minded and did not want Robert to visit. Robert, through his other senses, is able to "see" things. He can trace...

Latest answer posted October 28, 2008, 9:51 am (UTC)

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Cathedral

In “Cathedral,” the emotionally and spiritually blind narrator leads the physically blind Robert with mixed results: Robert learns about cathedrals but is deceived into believing the narrator feels...

Latest answer posted March 5, 2020, 7:47 pm (UTC)

3 educator answers

Cathedral

The narrator of Raymond Carver’s “Cathedral” could certainly be described as an antihero, though this is not such a pejorative description as readers sometimes think. An antihero is merely a...

Latest answer posted December 23, 2019, 7:50 am (UTC)

4 educator answers

Cathedral

The whole story is about how two men establish a close relationship because of their experience with a television show about cathedrals built in the Middle Ages. Robert can hear what the announcer...

Latest answer posted June 19, 2013, 7:15 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

From the first lines of "Cathedral," Raymond Carver establishes a distinctive narrative voice. His fallible, irascible, sensitive first-person narrator seems to owe something to Holden...

Latest answer posted January 1, 2020, 8:57 am (UTC)

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Cathedral

The narrator of "The Cathedral" spends most of the story feeling very uncertain about how he would interact with a blind man. He shows the reader that he thinks that a blind person would be...

Latest answer posted September 4, 2019, 7:49 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

A cathedral is a physical embodiment of transcendent, universal values. The narrator, unlike the blind man, Robert, seems disconnected from these values and all they represent. His limited...

Latest answer posted February 1, 2019, 9:07 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

Cathedral

The husband and his wife are alienated from each other, mainly because the husband feels only half alive. In "Cathedral," the minimalist writer, Raymond Carver, employs a recurrent theme of anomie,...

Latest answer posted November 21, 2017, 3:48 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

When the narrator of Raymond Carver's short story "Cathedral" offers his wife's friend Robert a drink, Robert replies, "Bub, I'm a Scotch man myself." The narrator is irritated at being called...

Latest answer posted March 12, 2021, 9:54 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

The image of a cathedral is used after Robert asks the narrator to describe what he sees on a television program. It is significant because it becomes the means to the act of communion between the...

Latest answer posted July 26, 2016, 5:19 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

Since the topic sentence should tell what the rest of the paragraph is about, you may wish to state something about the importance of one of the symbols to the characterization or theme of the...

Latest answer posted June 22, 2015, 3:43 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

In the short story “Cathedral,” the character Robert—who is literally blind—leads the emotionally and spiritually blind narrator by encouraging him to draw a picture of a cathedral. When the...

Latest answer posted June 12, 2020, 10:05 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

The narrator is a man who merely resides in his house: He watches his wife go to bed at night, he sees no friends, staying at home and watching television. Even when his wife's friend Robert...

Latest answer posted November 30, 2015, 11:57 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

It may be a mistake to attach too much significance to the fact that the narrator keeps referring to Robert as "the blind man." When an author gives a character a particular identifying habit or...

Latest answer posted June 24, 2013, 7:28 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

A conflict arises with the confrontation of two opposing parties. Generally the conflict includes the protagonist pitted against an antagonist, whether it be represented as his conscience, nature,...

Latest answer posted September 5, 2011, 12:44 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

I think that the reader can identify with the narrator in "Cathedral," making him a sympathetic character. The narrator is a sympathetic character from the story's opening. The narrator talks...

Latest answer posted November 22, 2015, 1:35 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

Men and women easily become irritated with each other after being married for a while. The narrator's wife is bothered by a lot of things in her husband. She doesn't like his heavy drinking....

Latest answer posted November 22, 2014, 2:27 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

In Raymond Carver's minimalistic story, "Cathedral," the irony, or contrast between what is expected and what really hapens, occurs in the latter part of the narrative. For, it is the sensitive...

Latest answer posted September 27, 2012, 12:10 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

The first reason the narrator gives for his attitude of not welcoming Robert's visit is that he doesn't know Robert. Then he mentions that Robert is blind and notes that he is not comfortable with...

Latest answer posted October 9, 2020, 6:33 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

At the end of the story "Cathedral" by Raymond Carver, the narrator is sitting with Robert, who is blind. They are watching TV together, and a program comes on which focuses on cathedrals....

Latest answer posted July 3, 2018, 9:06 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

An antagonist is the character, idea, force, or even setting that opposes the protagonist; in other words, the antagonist need not be a character at all, and if it is, he or she might be a figure...

Latest answer posted July 29, 2007, 1:24 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

Cathedral

When we're talking about characters in literature, "static" means "staying the same," and "dynamic" means "experiencing an important change." They are opposites, and it's helpful to look at which...

Latest answer posted April 6, 2016, 5:52 pm (UTC)

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Cathedral

The short story "Cathedral" by Raymond Carver tells of the visit of a blind man named Robert to a married couple. The narrator's wife has known Robert for ten years, ever since she took a job...

Latest answer posted December 25, 2019, 10:44 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

Cathedral

To compare is to find similarities between people or things, and to contrast is to find dissimilarities. The narrator and Robert have a few, but not many, similarities. In terms of similarities,...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2020, 2:43 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

Cathedral

Some of Raymond Carver's best later short stories and poems had single nouns as titles and focused on a single symbol. These include "The Bridle," "Boxes," and "Feathers." But this is nothing new...

Latest answer posted June 19, 2013, 12:20 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

The narrator of this short story by Carver is presented as a character who is extremely isolated. Even though he is married, it is acknowledged that this marriage is under strain and he is unable...

Latest answer posted December 23, 2012, 10:01 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

I would argue that the narrator is jealous of Robert and the importance that his wife takes in her relationship with him, but that he is actually blind to his jealousy and covers it up with a show...

Latest answer posted October 14, 2011, 2:43 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

In “Cathedral,” the narrator’s house is a metaphor for his limited life. In contrast to the blind man’s wonder and curiosity—as symbolized by a cathedral—the narrator’s narrow outlook and lack of...

Latest answer posted October 5, 2021, 3:29 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

Good thesis statements for “Cathedral” could relate to the likability of the narrator, the importance of technology, or the power of art. A thesis statement for a work of literature is typically an...

Latest answer posted September 14, 2022, 8:15 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

“Cathedral” by Raymond Carver focuses on prejudices and discovery, while “A Wall of Fire Rising” by Edwidge Danticat revolves around the themes of poverty and crushed hopes. The forms of both short...

Latest answer posted September 21, 2021, 12:53 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

There are several reasons that the narrator seems uncomfortable with the visit from his wife's friend, Robert. The narrator is not a social person. In fact, his wife tells him, "You don't have any...

Latest answer posted May 18, 2016, 4:12 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

The blind man, Robert, is teaching the narrator how to connect to himself and by extension other people. From the beginning, the narrator is consumed with jealousy and other negative feelings that...

Latest answer posted February 18, 2019, 10:03 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Cathedral

The narrator of Cathedral is a bitter, cynical, logical, hardened, whiney man. He views most things in life through a very non-impressed, sardonic lens. Nothing impressed him. Of his wife's ex,...

Latest answer posted September 3, 2009, 3:15 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

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