Cathedral Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 40 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Cathedral.
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Recovery

Many of the characters in Carver’s stories are, like Carver himself, either recovering alcoholics or alcoholics who have not started to recover yet. Recovery is a tricky process, as characters have to overcome years of drinking, and many bad decisions they are ashamed of, and try to start again. In Chef’s House, this process fails as the bad news that Wes and his wife have to leave the house sends Wes back to drinking.

It can safely be assumed the characters in Carver’s stories will not succeed in getting off alcohol. They are generally trying to quit, but odds are not good they will succeed. The desire to quit, however—to get some kind of redemption by quitting—is apparent in a lot of the stories. It makes the reader see the drunks as less entertaining than pathetic, since the reader knows the drunks will...

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This section contains 659 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Cathedral Study Guide
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