Literary Precedents for Cat's Cradle

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Most obviously, Cat's Cradle uses the Book of Jonah and Moby-Dick (1851).

This levianthic motif is broadened by references to Hobbes and in descriptions of the landscape — the highest mountain in San Lorenzo looks like a "blue whale." Some critics have compared the novel to prophetic works such as Blake's Marriage of Heaven and Hell (circa 1790) and Swift's Tale of a Tub (1704), and others have concentrated on its place in the tradition of dystopian literature. However, Cat's Cradle is also a mock-apocalyptic novel that reacts to the popularity of books such as Seven Days in May (Knebel and Bailey, 1962) and On the Beach (Shute, 1957).

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This section contains 108 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Cat's Cradle Study Guide
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