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Essay/Term paper: Steinbeck's east of eden

Essay, term paper, research paper:  English Literature Essays

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Steinbeck's East of Eden

In the novel , East of Eden by John Steinbeck, Catherine Ames is one of
the main characters. She is introduced to the reader as a monster and as time
goes on , she possesses both monster like and animal qualities. As Catherine
sher gets older and wiser , she gets more evil and displays her monster and
animals like characteristics. She knows she is powerful and indestructible. She
has manipulated and tricked many people her life causing them to go to the
extreme... death.

Catherine "Cathy" shows her evilness and her moster like behavior in
many scene throughout the book. Steinbeck illustrates Cathy as being a monster ,
"I believed there are monsters born in the world ... It is my belief that Cathy
Ames was born with the tendencies, or lack of them, which drove and forced her
all of her. Cathy was born with an innocent look that fooled many; she had
golden blond hair, hazel eyes, a thin and dedicated nose , and a small chin to
make her face look heart shaped. According to the town Cathy lived, Cathy had a
scent of sweetness, but that is just what Cathy wanted the town to see and think
when Cathy planned her kill; "The fire broke out... the Ames house went up like
a rocket ... Enough remained of Mr. and Mrs. Ames to make sure there were two
bodies ." Cathy had set the house on fire and broke into the safe to steal the
family's money. As the investigators scooped the place, they noticed that the
bolts stuck out and there were on keys left in the locks. They knew it was not
an accident. Cathy's body was never found, but the town assumed that she died.
"If it had not been for Cathy's murder, the fire and robbery might have been a
coincidence. " Steinbeck, again, portrays the reader that Cathy is a monster.
"when I said Cathy was a monster it seemed to me that it was so." Steinbeck is
reassuring the reader that Cathy is a monster and with the evidence before and
after this statement. For example, Cathy later changes her name to Kate entrains
a whorehouse. While she runs the house, she takes pictures of all the important
male individuals in the town to later send to their spouses and families. Cathy
plans to send the pictures whether they caused trouble or not.

As Cathy's character evolves, Steinbeck changes his description from a
monster to an animal. "Her head jerked up and her sharp teeth fastened on his
hand across the back and up into the palm near the little finger...her jaw was
set and her head twisted and turned, mangling his hand the way a terrier
worries a sack." Steinbeck said .Cathy's sharp teeth sunk into the man's flesh
like a dog's canines would have. She tore away at the skin and twisted and
turned her head to resemble a dog. "Do you think I want to be human? Look at
those picture! I'd rather be an animal than a human. The physical features of
Cathy are that of a human but the mental state of her resembles an animal.
Although, Cathy seems to down grade and be paradoxical about herself because
humans are much smarter than dog, but she says she is smarter than any normal
human. She knows how to manipulated any individual without trying; like for
example she said, "Uncontrolled hatred shone in Kate's eyes. She creamed , a
long and shrill animal screech." Cathy, for unknow reasons has animal
characteristics. This one just happens to be the screech of an animals.

Steinbeck uses Cathy for suspense in his novel. You never know what she
is going to do next or what she is thinking. She has more characteristics of a
monster and an animal than a human. Cathy's character has no talk about being
normal except for her looks. I think the only sensible thing she did in her life
time was not killing Adam, her loving spouse, and committing suicide. She has
not a care in the world and her only love is hatred.


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