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A View from the Bridge’ by Arthur Miller

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Introduction

A View from the Bridge' by Arthur Miller Arthur Miller was originally told the basic story to 'A View From The Bridge' when he was working as a ship fitter on Brooklyn shipyard during the Second World War. In Arthur Miller's autobiography, 'Timebends', he noticed that ' the near majority of workers were Italian'. Arthur Miller precisely sets the play in Red Hook, ' the slum that faces the bay on the seaward side of Brooklyn Bridge ... the gullet of New York'. Red Hook is an Italian-American community full of illegal immigrants and their descendants, very much like the one where Arthur Miller had previously worked, Miller saw this area as ' a dangerous and mysterious world at the water's edge that drama and literature had never touched' (Timebends). Miller based 'A View from the Bridge' in the late 1940's, when many Italians were coming to America. Miller intended the play to be a modern version of a Greek tragedy, the first version was written in one act, written in verse. Miller, in the final version, kept most of the content of the verse but swapped it into prose. He did this so he could emphasize the part of the characters so the audience could relate to the characters and how they would feel. ...read more.

Middle

From the Alfieri's introductory speech what will happen is obvious, and the point is made that man is powerless to stop it ' in some Caesar's year ... another lawyer, quite differently dressed, heard the same complaint and sat their as powerless as I, and watched it run its bloody course'. This shows the audience that the problems that Eddie and the other main characters face are not unique, they have been occurring for generations. Alfieri saw a wise women and she told him that the only thing he could do was pray for him. In Greek tragedies, the central figure is basically a good person, usually a king or someone of importance, who breaks the natural unwritten rules in some way. In 'A View from the Bridge', unlike a Greek tragedy, Eddie is not a king or anyone of importance, he is an average man, but he is a good man, we know this because he has accepted into his house, provided for, been a farther figure to and loved his wife's niece, Catherine, on account of her mothers death. The natural rules that Eddie breaks in the play are obvious. In his society, no matter what, you do not 'snitch', Within the play Beatrice tells the story of 'Vinnie Bolsano', A ...read more.

Conclusion

Alfieri addresses the point of justice in his talk with Marco towards the end 'this is not god, Marco. You hear? Only God makes justice.' Family and honour are included throughout the play, honour particularly in the last act, where Eddie makes the choice to jeopardize his respect by reporting Marco and Rodolfo to the immigration agency, his honour is taken from him when Marco spits I his face and insults him in the street. Eddie knows that his life would not be worth living in this community without his honour, ' wiping the neighbourhood with my name like a dirty rag! I want my name, Marco. Now gimme my name' In conclusion, I think that 'A View from the Bridge' is a Modern Greek tragedy. 'A View from the Bridge' has all the basic elements of a Greek tragedy including a chorus. All the emotions invoked by the play are typically characteristic to that experienced by the audience of an original Greek tragedy. 'A View from the Bridge' was originally intended to be a modern version if a Greek tragedy when miller wrote it. In the play, the mystery is never what will happen, but how it will happen, from Alfieri's first speech the audience knows that the events will be 'bloody' in their conclusion. ...read more.

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