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The Relationship between father and son in 'All my Sons'

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Introduction

The relationship between father and son is explored in 'All my Sons', what did Chris mean by the quote 'I never saw you as a man, I saw you as my father' Arthur Miller's exploration of the father and son relationship between Joe Keller and Chris Keller, revolve around the territories which involve Joe's need for Chris to want to take and carry the family mantle, which in this case is the business which Joe has worked on for 40 odd years. Joe's ultimate fear in this case is the fact that Chris's idealism stands in the way of this. Chris likes to focus on the positive aspect of people, this is where the quote 'I never saw you as a man, I saw you as father'. ...read more.

Middle

This admiration of Joe from Chris plays negatively when the truth is out, this is because Chris is more hurt by the fact that the father he always held in high esteem turned out to be an indirect cause of death with reference to the twenty one dead pilots. Chris's statement also plays to a theme which Arthur Miller plays upon, which is the fact that tragedy can befall the common man, which in this case is Joe Keller. Keller has always been a common man, but Chris's statement makes the readers and audience realise that for the very first time Chris has seen Joe for what he really his. And the consequence of this can lead to nothing short of a break in relationship. ...read more.

Conclusion

Chris tries to understand the reasoning behind Joe Keller's actions, but he cannot comprehend it due to the fact that his idealism and na�ve view of the world cannot allow him to understand the basis of the actions of other people around him. Chris's confusion is shown in his speech in Act 2, page 158 (Penguin Classics), 'What the hell do you mean you did it for me?'... 'Don't you live in the world? What the hell are you?' His reaction can be directly linked to his statement of not seeing Joe Keller as just any ordinary person, but as his father, this involves the fact that Joe Keller has proved that the pressures of the American way of life, can affect the way people relate to each other and see each other, in this case it is the way Chris now sees his Father. ...read more.

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