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A View from the Bridge - Mr. Alfieri's role.

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Introduction

A View from the Bridge Mr. Alfieri is a vital character from Arthur Miller's play A View from the Bridge. Alfieri is a Sicilian, but has lived in Red Hook New York since the days of Al Capone. He is a combination of the two cultures, and the overall view that we are given is that Alfieri is a man who knows who he is, what his personality is like and what he wants from life. Not unlike many of the day, all of whom looking for the American dream. Alfieri's role in this play is slightly unusual compared to many other modern scripts. He plays two roles in "A View from the Bridge" one is that of a character, a lawyer known by Eddie Carbone and connected to the events leading to the destruction of Mr Carbone, and secondly he is a narrator, like that of a Greek Chorus. ...read more.

Middle

Every time the Arthur Miller brings up heritage the characters will side with one of their roots. Alfieri makes it quite clear what he would rather be, he speaks of the people in the neighbourhood being "Quite civilised, quite American." The characters that have lived in America for most of their lives (Eddie, Beatrice, Catherine) all take the same stand as Alfieri and disregard their Sicilian roots, preferring to show the 'civilised' American side of their personalities. It is only Marco, the immigrant, who will stand for their country of birth, "You think we have no tall buildings in Italy?" Another significant theme in the play is law and order. Arthur Miller again highlights the differences between Sicilian and American life, this time in justice. Despite character's choices of heritage all opt for the Sicilian lifestyle of justice. ...read more.

Conclusion

Despite this we meant to presume that in this situation, Alfieri is speaking to Marco as a fellow friend and not a lawyer. However we then see the other side of Alfieri, just as we thought he was completely ignorant of his Sicilian heritage, he speaks to Marco, in the tone of an older, more weary Sicilian man giving his final judicial and religious advice "This is not god Marco, only God makes justice." This entire play seems designed to demonstrate the destructive power and outright lie of the 'American Dream'. Alfieri is used to show the bridge or connection between the two cultures, he does this with his knowledge of the American law system and his personnel knowledge of Sicily, his country of birth. What we learn from this is that no place provides us with that "Dream" and that different countries posses different cultures which we must be prepared to expect especially if involved in acts where the law would be involved. Kyriakos Perdikou ...read more.

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