By Harriet Webb, Chloe Ward and Grace WheatleyCATHERINE
BACKGROUND Catherine is an attractive 17 year old girl. Because she has hardly ever left Brooklyn she is very naïve She is not very good at standing up for herself She only ever wants to please Eddie, and gets upset when she feels like she’s done something wrong In Act II she reveals that she is in fact quite intelligent when she says: ‘You don’t know; nobody knows! I’m not a baby, I know a lot more than people think I know.’ Also, she gets told by her teacher that she’s the best student in the class – that’s why she gets offered a job Despite this she does still rely on Eddie and Beatrice for a lot of things though, and can’t seem to grow up However we see sometimes that maybe Eddie doesn’t want her to grow up because he wants her all to himself
RELATIONSHIPS BEATRICE:Catherine has a strong bond with Beatrice as she is her aunt. Beatriceconstantly encourages Catherine to go for the job that she has been offered,and she knows she needs to grow up and become more independent. Sheonly wants the best for Catherine. She is a very kind and caring person, whocares about her home and family appearance. We can see this as when shehears the news of her cousins arrival, she says: ‘I was gonna wash the walls, Iwas gonna buy a new table cloth.’ This shows she is a very proud house wife.Beatrice is the only one to highlight Eddie’s possible feelings for Catherinewhen she says: ‘You want something else, Eddie- and you can never haveher!’The relationship Catherine has with her aunt Beatrice is significant in the playbecause it highlights just how much Catherine needs to mature to becomemore independent.
RELATIONSHIPS EDDIE:Catherine and Eddie have a very strong relationship. Sometimes it seems sostrong that he is seen as her father rather than her uncle, as she has grownup with him as the ‘man of the house’. Their relationship sometimes seemsa little too close however, and when Catherine is around Eddie we see herchildish side come out and she acts a lot more immature. We can see thateven Beatrice notices their close relationship when she says: ‘Sometimesyou throw yourself at him like when you was twelve years old’, and, ‘It’swonderful for a whole family to love each other, but you’re a grown womanand you’re in the same house as a grown man.’At some points through out the play though we can see that maybeCatherine’s inability to grow up is down to the fact that Eddie won’t let her.He is very protective of her, which we see when she shows him her new skirtand he doesn’t like it. When he tells her he doesn’t like it we also get to see aglimpse of maybe the true feelings he has for Catherine.Eddie’s relationship with Catherine is very significant in the play because itleads to climax’s later on in the play.
RELATIONSHIPS RODOLPHO:When Rodolpho arrives in America, he is very enthusiastic about starting anew life, however he is some what immature because he tells exaggeratedversions of experiences he’s had to make himself look better and to becomethe centre of attention.Catherine and Rodolpho hit it off from the very beginning. We see thisbecause she is impressed by the colour of his hair and he welcomes hercomments because he likes being the centre of attention. She also loves hissinging, and again he likes to show himself off by singing for her and therest of the family.Through out the novel Catherine’s relationship with Rodolpho puts strain onher and Eddies relationship because of Eddie’s jealousy.
KEY SCENES SKIRT SCENE:In this scene Eddie has returned from work and is unhappywith the length of Catherine’s skirt, claiming it to be ‘tooshort, ain’t it?’ he also says it’s ‘giving me the willies’ whichsuggests that he treats her like a child and is preventing herfrom growing up. It also highlights Catherines naivetybecause she doesn’t know what it’s like to be treated like agrown. When Catherine says ‘But those guys look at all thegirls’, Eddie says,’ You ain’t ‘all the girls’’, which suggests heis extremely jealous of the attention Catherine couldreceive.
KEY SCENES PAPER DOLL:Catherine is very impressed by Rodolpho’s singing duringthe Paper Doll scene, and when he has to finish abruptly shesays ‘Let him finish, it’s beautiful! He terrific, it’s terrificRodolpho!’ This could have sparked some jealously in Eddie,suggesting he is extremely protective of her - like in thescene with Catherine’s skirt earlier on in the play. This isemphasised at the end of the scene when Eddie’s face isdescribed as being ‘puffed with trouble’.
KEY SCENES KISSING SCENE:This scene is extremely important in the play as this is when Eddie’sfeeling’s finally come out as he kisses Catherine and Rodolpho. It also showshis jealously as seeing them alone in the house together sparks anger insideof him, and this is why he lashes out and tells Rodolpho to pack his bags andleave: ‘Get your stuff and get out of here!’Catherine says ‘Eddie, I’m not gonna be a baby anymore!’ which would haveangered Eddie even more because he wants her all to himself. In responseEddie reaches out and kisses her. He also shouts at Rodolpho and kisses himafterwards.
SONG PAPER DOLL:The lyrics through out this song present Catherine as being the ‘doll’who ‘doesn’t belong’ to Eddie. She is also treated as a ‘doll’ by Eddie ashe tells her how to dress and behave. He is very protective ofher, almost as if he owns her.Lyrics in the song such as ‘Hey boy, what you gonna do?’ could besuggesting Rodolpho taunting Eddie just to see how he might react.The line ‘He’s a flirty flirty guy’ could also be directed at Rodolpho’sactions towards Catherine