ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Books, Literature, and Writing»
  • Books & Novels

East of Eden Analysis

Updated on September 27, 2010

Did you enjoy reading East of Eden?

See results

 

 

Character Analysis of Cathy:

 

     In East of Eden, Steinbeck suggests that there is a struggle between the forces of good and bad in the world and through evilness, deception and, selfishness, the bad usually prevails.

     Cathy is evil because of her deceptive and harmful actions to nearly every character in the novel. At one instance, as Adam attempts to prevent Cathy from leaving him, she nearly kills the poor man. “She shot him…and he staggered back and fell to the floor. She moved slowly to him, cautiously, as she might toward a wounded animal. He stared up into her eyes, which inspected him impersonally. She tossed the pistol on the floor beside him and walked out of the house” (Steinbeck 202). Her heartless decision to shoot the man who truly loves her reveals her insentient intentions: to use others as puppets for her own entertainment and benefit, and to throw them away when she is finished. After shooting Adam, she inspects him “impersonally” as he struggles to comprehend what has just happened. She then “tossed the gun on the floor”, which depicts her careless attitude and “walked out of the house” leaving the impressing that Cathy truly hold absolutely no feelings or compassion towards Adam. Rather than preserving her sweet and dainty image, Cathy decides to express her true macabre self.

    Cathy is deceptive because she learns at a young age how to manipulate and control people. When Adam finally works up the courage to visit Cathy in the brothel, Cathy admits to her ambiguous past. “I could always make people do what I wanted…I remember how they talked, ‘Isn’t she a pretty little thing, so sweet, so dainty?’ And no one ever knew me. I made them jump through hoops, and they never knew it” (Steinbeck 319). Cathy is able to twist and bend people at her own will without them even noticing. She has them “jump through hoops” while they believe she is “a pretty little thing, so sweet, so dainty”. Deceiving and beguiling the characters in the book seems to be a game to Cathy, where she can be in control of almost anyone at anytime. By stating, “And no one ever knew me” Cathy clearly says that she has formed a fake, innocent image of herself and that no one has truly comprehended her motives and purpose.

 

     Cathy exemplifies selfishness throughout the course of the novel by deceiving people for her own benefit and on her account. The narrator believes that monsters exist in humans like Cathy and he displays her egocentric personality: “Cathy’s lies were never innocent. Their purpose was to escape punishment, work, or responsibility, and they were used for profit, usually at the expense of others” (Steinbeck 74). The narrator uses the convictive phrase, “never innocent”. Cathy always had an interior motive for misleading and taking advantage of people. She would only do something if it benefited her, whether it was to “escape punishment, work, or responsibility”, or to gain money and power. Ultimately, her lies and deceit were “used for profit…at the expense of others”, which clearly illustrates her selfish attitude.

_________________________________________________________________

Need more summaries and notes on East of Eden? No worries, we've got you covered. Check out these sites:

What did you think of East of Eden?

Please leave comments, criticism, or opinions.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      lance 5 years ago

      As majority of the people are struggling be it in family, workplace, in public or private places, rich or poor. Everyone is facing daily challenges as how we percieved each occurences would depend how we view and make choices.A beautiful story and Steinbeck made it clear that every desire is decided by every person and that can be conquered.Be it good or evil. It's what TIMSHEL to us.

    • profile image

      baba chingchong 6 years ago

      i absolutely love this book, steinbeck has to be really creative to make this book, takes a lot of creativity

    • Lancer_2013 profile image
      Author

      Lancer_2013 7 years ago

      It really was a great book! Thanks for commenting!

    • profile image

      shayamaya 7 years ago

      good

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 7 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      This is definitely my favorite Steinbeck work. It also made a good movie :)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)