What do I need to know about ... Catherine?
Catherine is one of the main characters in the play; she is an insecure girl who, at the beginning of the novel is constantly eagerly seeking approval and attention. E.g. Page 13, You like it? She also comes across to the audience as very innocent and unaware of the effect that she has in the family.
She is Beatrice's niece and has been raised by her aunt and her husband, Eddie. She craves freedom even though she longs to be accepted and be noticed by her uncle. Throughout the play her love for Rodolpho, Beatrice’s cousin, unfolds.
There is a constant undercurrent through out the play based on Eddie’s unspoken feelings for Catherine and how Beatrice out of jealousy or care tries to get Eddie to stop overprotecting her and treating her like a child.

The Audience's Viewpoint
The audience sees Catherine as a slightly naïve woman at the outset who is not willing to fight for her decisions, she wants to do something for herself, yet if Eddie disapproves, she will give up. E.g. Page 14, ‘[almost in tears because he disapproves]’. In the second Act though she becomes more assertive and makes the decision to leave the house. She matures and develops as a character.
Throughout the play the audience are aware that Catherine loses her innocence and by the end of the play we notice that Catherine no longer seeks Eddie's approval. She has chosen Rodolpho. She seems to have come to terms with the fact that although she would have liked Eddie's approval she cannot have it.


Key Quotations
Page 20- She’s 17 years old, you gonna keep her in the house all her life?’ [Beatrice to Eddie]
‘You still think you’re a little girl, honey,’ Here Beatrice, is trying to protect her from Eddie, this could be due to the jealousy she feels towards Catherine, that she receives more attention from Eddie than his own wife. Another example of this is, on page 43 ‘I told you fifty times already, you can’t act the way you act... You still walk around in your slip’, she wants Catherine to be less dependant on Eddie.

‘You ain’t all the girls.’ [Eddie to Catherine.] This could be interpreted in many ways, it could be just the typical response of a caring guardian or a display of sexual possesiveness.

Her role in the novel
Catherine may be viewed as an indirect cause of the tragedy. It all starts with Catherine and her ‘love’ for Rodolpho, Eddie does not approve of Rodolpho and therefore he treats Rodolpho badly due to the fact that he is jealous of Catherine and Rodopho's relationship . This leads to Eddie becoming more and more irritated and annoyed, this grows into anger and eventually Eddie betrays Marco and Rodolpho to the authorities. This betrayal exasperates Marco’s anger and he confronts Eddie, resulting in a fight and Eddies imminent death. Catherine could also have tried harder to behave less like a child around him. It is debatable though whether she can be held responsible for what Eddie does - a different reading is that she is a victim in this situation.