* Site-Outage Notice: Our engineering elves will be tweaking the Shmoop site from Monday, December 22 10:00 PM PST to Tuesday, December 23 5:00 AM PST. The site will be unavailable during this time.
Dismiss
© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Cat's Cradle

Cat's Cradle

by Kurt Vonnegut

Cat's Cradle Chapter 79 Summary

Why McCabe's Soul Grew Coarse

  • Despite their best efforts, McCabe and Bokonon never managed to make San Lorenzo a paradise.
  • On the plus side, the people hardly realized. They were too busy playing their part in McCabe and Bokonon's game of political dictator versus religious figurehead.
  • "'So life became a work of art,' [John marvels]" (79.5).
  • Yep, only one problem. The stress of playing a ruthless dictator and a benevolent saint took its physical and mental toll on McCabe and Bokonon respectively. They both went cuckoo crazy, if you'll pardon our scientific jargon.
  • Then, the hook's use became a very grim reality.
  • But McCabe never actually caught Bokonon. Some part of him stayed sane enough to know that without Bokonon he'd have no reason to exist.
  • And in case you're wondering, "Papa" Monzano understands how this game is played and has stuck to the rules. He only executes about one person every two years by hook. Got to keep up appearances and whatnot.
  • Julian then reveals himself to be a Bokononist. He tells John that he'll find out he's one someday too.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...

Advertisement
Noodle's College Search
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement