When the blind man pulls up, the narrator is already being judgmental and prejudiced towards the blind man. He does not even the slightest open mind about meeting this man that his wife has such a good relationship with. In the story Cathedral, Raymond Carver uses metaphoric symbols, an object title, and a dialect style to get across the message that you cannot judge someone you have never met and the difference between looking and seeing things in a different perspective. The wife begins to explain to her husband that a close friend of hers is going to stay with them. She does explain how he met the blind man to her husband but that still doesn’t stop him from being jealous and judgmental.
Discomfort is a theme that is used by both Raymond Carver and Nathanial Hawthorn in each of their short stories. In Raymond Carver’s “The Cathedral,” a husband is uncomfortable about his wife’s old boss staying at his and hers house. He is uncomfortable with her boss because it happens to be a man who is blind and the fact that he is blind bothers him. In Nathanial Hawthorns “The Birth-Mark,” A scientist
He couldn’t stand things, I guess.” Nick: “Do many men kill themselves, Daddy?” Father: “Not very many, Nick…” Nick: “Is dying hard, Daddy?” Father: “No, I think its pretty easy, Nick... ... middle of paper ... ...d his lost love, he produced the character Krebs who was troubled by female companionship. Krebs wanted a woman but was not willing to work for one. Krebs considered relationships too complicated and painful. Hemingway learned this from previous relationships especially the relationship between Hemingway and Kurowsky. Krebs who lived with his parents after the war continued to do nothing around the house.
He [the blind man] was no one I knew. And his [the blind man] being blind bothered me." The narrator also feels intimidated by his wife?s relationship with the blind man. When he is telling of her friendship with Robert h... ... middle of paper ... ...r so long, after he stepped out of it he got uncomfortable and reverted back. Robert tells the narrator to find some heavy paper and pencils so they can draw a cathedral together.
Because of this, her husband feels “she [has] told him everything or it so it seemed” (363) about their relationship. Upon the arrival of his wife’s friend, the husband is ultimately uncomfortable around Robert because he does not know how to communicate with or act around him. His discomfort is revealed when Robert and his wife were sharing their experiences “about the major things that had come to pass for them in the past ten years” (367). He felt it was necessary to join in because he thought Robert would “think [he] left the room and didn’t want [his wife] to think [he] was feeling left out” (367). It is obvious the husband is overly involved with Robert’s handicap and fails to see him as a person with his own thoughts and ideas.
They mailed tapes and sent them back and forth.” (506) The story also is set up by briefly describing Carver’s wife’s past relations with her first husband. Their past marital troubles seem to be a main basis for the wife’s and Robert’s extended contact. After this background history, the story then jumps into the present with the Blind man on his way to stay for a night. The blind man is invited to stay with the Carver’s by Raymond’s wife for he has just been through the death of his own wife and is now alone. Even this being the case, Raymond Carver’s distaste for the blind man is evident from the first paragraph on.
He is jealous of his wife’s past and doesn’t want Robert to visit them. Robert is a blind man who is an old friend of narrator’s wife. Narrator’s wife is an unnamed woman who invited Robert to her home after a long period of time. The short story mostly revolves around these three characters and their discussions. Cathedral, the short story, takes place when narrator’s wife invites Robert to visit them.
This man, like most of us, can only try to imagine what life is like for Robert. As a result of his inability to relate with Robert, he thinks his behaviors are odd, and is unable to understand the relationship he has with his wife. His wife worked for this blind man many years ago, reading him reports and case studies, and organizing his "...little office" (Carver 98) in the county's social-service department. He remem¬ bers a story his wife told about the last day she worked for him. The blind man asked her if he could touch her face, and she agreed.
He knows there are lots of people just like him. In “The Cathedral” the extent of the husband’s ignorance or naiveté is extremely irritating. When his wife tells him the beautiful story of the blind man’s romantic relationship with his wife Beulah, all he could think of is “ What a pitiful life this woman must have led. Imagine a woman who could never see herself as she was seen in the eyes of her loved one. A woman who could on day after day and never see the smallest compliment from her beloved.
And his being blind bothered me. My idea of blindness came from the movies. In the movies, the blind moved slowly and never laughed. Sometimes they were led by seeing-eye dogs. A blind man in my house was not something I looked forward to."