Cathedral From the Perspective of Reconstructive Postmodernism

Wenjing XU


Raymond Carver (1938-1988) is a famous American writer in the second half of the 20th century. He is very influential in the contemporary fiction field, who has been praised as “the American Chekhov”, “the greatest American short story writer after Hemingway” and “the greatest contributor to the revival of short story in the 1980s”. Cathedral, a collection of stories published in 1983, is Carver’s mature work nominated for Pulitzer Prize, which includes a short story named Cathedral.

Carver’s short story Cathedral illustrates the alienation and imbalance of the human spirit brought about by modernism. Aiming at Raymond Carver’s short story Cathedral, this paper adopts the method of combining literature review and literary criticism to illustrate the main narrative features of Carver’s novels from the perspective of Reconstructive Postmodernism. In Carver’s opinion, when communicating with others, recognizing and accepting the difference between oneself and others, which also means integrating into the world of others, enables the isolated individual can truly communicate with the social partner outside the family. Through true acceptance and respect of others which has been externalized as the means of communication, the inner relationship between the self and others is rebuilt, and the spiritual dilemma can be got rid of, and the spiritual home of human beings is finally rebuilt to accomplish the overall ecological civilization of human society, which is of great significance to the construction of contemporary ecological civilization and the realization of harmony between man and nature.


Reconstructive Postmodernism; Cathedral; Spiritual ecology

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