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Cash by Mind Map: Cash

1. Physical Description

1.1. Composed/Quiet

1.1.1. "Cash is not listening. He is looking down at her peaceful, rigid face fading into the dusk...After a while he turns without looking at pa and leaves the room. The the saw begins to snore again." (46) This passage describing Cash's reaction to his mother's death shows that he doesn't really convey emotion at all. He stands for a while looking at her body, then continues his carpentry, almost as if nothing has happened.

1.2. Broken leg

1.2.1. "Cash fell off of that church" (13) "If you had anything you could call luck, you might say it was lucky this is the same leg you broke before" (223) Cash and his broken leg are referred to multiple times within the novel. Along with his carpentry, his leg seems to be one of his major identifying characteristics in the eyes of the characters of the book.

2. Symbol of Private Self

2.1. Organization/Orderlyness

2.1.1. "1. There is more surface for the nails to grip. 2. There is twice the gripping-surface to each seam. 3. The water..." (73) The very first section narrated by Cash is written in list form. This shows that Cash is very systematic and orderly.

2.2. Attempting Perfection

2.2.1. "It won't balance. If you want it to tote and ride on a balance, we will have--" (86) This is yet another instance of Cash obsessing over his work on the coffin. He wants everything to be just perfect about it. Jewel finally gets so fed up with him, he carries the coffin to the wagon himself.

3. Symbol of Public Self

3.1. Carpentry

3.1.1. "...until everybody that passes in the road will have to stop and see it and say what a fine carpenter he is." (13) It it stated multiple times in the novel that Cash is a good carpenter, and it seems to be what he is known for in the area.

3.2. Selflessness

3.2.1. "It never bothered me much" (222) Even when Cash's leg is to the point where he may not be able to walk again, Cash still puts himself last, insisting that it never bothered him.

3.3. Patience

3.3.1. Cash never ever raises his voice, or complains about his broken leg. He is very patient in waiting to go the doctor, and is very patient with all of the people he encounters on his journey, never raising his voice or getting angry once.

4. Personality Weaknesses

4.1. Selflessness

4.1.1. Cash's act of selflessness as far as waiting to go see the doctor, and agreeing to ride in a rickety wagon for five days has cost him a healthy leg, and may not be able to walk ever again.

4.2. Lack of connection with humans

4.2.1. "He kept on trying to say something until the gal leaned down and wiped his mouth. 'It's his tools...He wants to see them.'... They shoved them under the side of the bed, where he could reach his hand and touch them when he felt better." When Cash is sick and laying in bed, he doesn't ask for the comfort of his mother, sister, or family. He asks for his tools so that he can touch them and make himself feel better. This shows how Cash is not very connected with humans, but finds comfort his tools and carpentry.

4.3. Responsible

4.3.1. Cash finds it to be his responsibility to take care of the family. Anse has proven to be nothing to the family but dead-weight. Having this responsibility upon his shoulders, he does not tell Darl that the family is sending him to the nut-house, which seems to bother him a little in his passage describing Darl's disbelief.

4.3.2. "I ought to come down last week and taken a sight on [the bridge]." (129) Cash blames the washing out of the bridge to be his fault. As touching as the gesture is, Cash needs to realize that he could not have prevented the washing out of the bridge. He was already preoccupied working night and day on Addie's coffin for her. It is not his fault at all that the crossing is difficult

5. Personality Strengths

5.1. Responsible

5.1.1. He takes it upon himself to complete Addie's coffing to the best of his ability, which he does very well. He seems to the be the only member of the Bundren family to actually complete the task he is given with success.

5.2. Kindness

5.2.1. "It's all right...He earned the money. He cleaned up that forty acres...He did it single handed, working at night by lantern...I don't reckon that horse cost anybody anything except Jewel. I don't reckon we need to worry." (120) This is an instance of Cash's kindness, as he defends Jewel and his newly earned horse. Cash is consistently kind throughout the novel, save for him lying to Darl and not telling him that the family was planning on sending him away.

5.3. Patience

5.3.1. Cash's patience is on of his traits that makes him the most likable characters in the novel.

5.4. Selflessness

5.4.1. "'Let's take Cash to the doctor first... She'll wait. She's already waited nine days... Don't you want to go to Peabody's now, Cash?' 'Go on...It feels right easy now. It's best to get things done in the right place." (217-218) Cash's selflessness as far as his leg goes and working so hard for others makes him somewhat of the leader of the Bundren family. (building coffin, sacrificing more than anyone else while crossing the river, putting Addie's burial before doctoring his leg, never complaining about his leg, etc.)

6. Others' Opinions

6.1. Jewel

6.1.1. Thinks that Cash loves carpentry more than he loves his mother, Addie "It's because he stays out there, right under the window, hammering and sawing on that goddamn box. Where she's got to see him. Where every breath she draws is full of his knocking and sawing...she can see him saying See. See what a good one I am making for you." (13) Jewel talks about Cash making his mother's coffin with a hint of annoyance. Jewel wants Cash to think about how Addie seeing her own coffing being made might affect her, and wants him to move somewhere else. Cash is only concerned with the making of the coffin.

6.2. Darl

6.2.1. Thinks that Cash is a good carpenter, just like everyone. He also seems to think of him as a good friend, both of them being the oldest sons. "A good carpenter, Cash is...Addie Bundren could not want a better one, a better box to lie in." (4) In contrast to what Jewel thinks about Cash's making of the coffin, Darl seems to appreciate that Cash is putting as much time and effort into it, and believes that Addie will appreciate it as well. "'I thought you would have told me', he said. 'I never thought you wouldn't have.'" (220) Darl talks to Cash in disbelief that he didn't tell his brother his family was planning on sending him to the nut-house.

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