Character in 'Cathedral'

Topics: Marriage, Short story, Wife Pages: 2 (730 words) Published: October 30, 2005
One of the many tools authors can use when they write short stories is character development. One such author that creates two contrasting yet comparable characters in his stories is Robert Carver. In the short story "Cathedral" by Raymond Carver, we see three main characters. The characters include the blind man, Robert, the blind man's friend, the wife, and her husband. Throughout the story Carver sets up Robert, the blind man, and her friend's husband to be contrasted in a variety of ways, but he manages to bring them together at the end.

The story starts out with us getting a little bit of background information regarding the history between Robert and the wife. We learn that they met when the wife got a job reading to a blind man. She worked for him for a summer and they apparently became very good friends. Since she left that job they still communicate through sending each other tapes. The wife also writes poems about Robert. We can see that the husband doesn't like this very much, and it is probably making him jealous. This is one of the reasons he doesn't want Robert to visit and he is very leery of him.
We get a good deal of the husband's character before Robert even comes. When he and his wife are talking about Robert coming, he comments that he doesn't have any blind friends. His wife replies ‘You don't have any friends.' This gives us insight into his life, and we might assume that he is not be a person that is easy to get along with, or that he is a person that likes to keep to himself. The husband also comments on the life of Robert. He says that he feels sorry for him because he had married a woman and spent a good portion his life with her. When she died, but he had never even gotten to see what she looked like. From this we might guess that the husband is kind of a superficial guy, who cares a lot about looks but who doesn't care very much about personality.

Robert, on the other hand, seems to be quite the...
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