Grace Smeath’s mother, a very religious and strict woman whom Elaine detests. Mrs. Smeath is extremely judgmental and narcissistic. She has big bones, and wears steel-rimmed glasses and print housedresses. She smiles, but she never laughs. She also makes it her mission to “save” Elaine and bring her to church, but she always seems to judge her for coming from a different background and not knowing which hats to wear or whether she should say grace at dinner. Ultimately, she becomes a symbol of Elaine’s rejection of religion and religious convention—when she becomes a painter, Elaine paints several portraits of Mrs. Smeath in vengeance for her cruelty and judgmental attitude in Elaine’s childhood.
Mrs. Smeath Character Timeline in Cat’s Eye
The timeline below shows where the character Mrs. Smeath appears in Cat’s Eye. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part Three: Empire Bloomers
...inviting Elaine over without Carol, which she says is because of her mother’s bad heart. Mrs. Smeath has to rest every day because of her heart, and she is controlling, sturdy, and... (full context)
Part Four: Deadly Nightshade
...squash. Elaine starts eating before grace because she does not know what it is, which Mrs. Smeath chides her for. After dinner, Grace and Elaine sit on the velvet chesterfield in the... (full context)
Part Five: Wringer
Part Seven: Our Lady of Perpetual Help
Part Nine: Leprosy
Part Eleven: Falling Women
Part Fourteen: Unified Field Theory
...the early paintings characterized by Charna as female symbolism, the paintings of Jon and Josef, Mrs. Smeath . She tries to see her childhood self in Mrs. Smeath’s eyes, and recognizes the... (full context)