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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 "A view from the bridge", has been constructed in the style of Greek tragedy. The first incomplete draft was called an 'Italian tragedy'. Original Greek tragedy would be one act long and would take place in a single setting. Miller's play differs from the original Greek tragedy because it took place over two months and is not in one setting, as it moves from Carbone household, to the streets and even to Alfeiri's office. A component of Greek tragedy is a tragic hero, or a protagonist, who is usually of high status and who is between the extremes of goodness and badness, and must come to grief on account of self error. In this play our tragic hero is Eddie Carbone. Eddie is a simple, straightforward man who works and lives a normal life. He is very humorous, kind. He is also generous in anticipating the arrival of his wife's cousins who have entered America illegally. He is over protective of his niece Catherine, in her increasing maturity and physical attraction. It is this over protectiveness that keeps Catherine away from her independence as Eddie says, "you are a baby", he insists though she is almost eighteen; "I guess I didn't figure on one thing that you would ever grow up". Due to his possessiveness and sexual desire which he doesn't understand, he loses his life at the end of the play in a fight with Marco. This makes him our tragic hero. To enable the play to flow continuously, Miller uses the role of the Chorus. The chorus is the person, or a character in the play, whose function is to deliver the prologue and the epilogue, comment on the play, establish norms of behaviour, tell the audience what they should think and even what is going to happen next. A chorus remains emotionally detached from what is happening in the play, their role is to inform the audience. ...read more.

Middle

She indicates that by saying, "when am I gonna be wife again, Eddie?" He has not made love to her for some time, she knows her rights as a wife; and she's not prepared to let Eddie ignore these rights because she knows Catherine is the root cause for it. Beatrice shows love for her cousins too when they first enter U.S. by offering them a place to stay for "as long as you wish". She shows her love for Rodolfo by allowing him to take Catherine out to the cinemas. She does not tell any one about Marco's and Rodolfo's illegal status, unlike her husband. Marco is motivated by love of his own family in Sicily. The only reason he came to U.S. is to make money, so he can support his family. He knows Beatrice and Eddie are very nice and kind to him and his brother because they are letting him to stay at their house. He feels it is his duty to tell his brother to behave in an appropriate manner towards Eddie and Beatrice. Marco is stronger than his brother Rodolfo which is evident from the tense drama at the chair lifting contest at end of act I. He shows Eddie that even though they are staying in his house they will not tolerate any kind of insult or be bullied around. Marco has a very strong feeling about his society's code which Eddie does not realise. Marco knows that betraying him and his brother is something that cannot go unpunished. When Eddie has betrayed Marco and his brother to the immigration Bureau, Marco thinks what Eddie did to him is very dishonourable and unjust, even though Eddie has not broken any real law. To Marco his Sicilian code of justice and honour is more important than any individual. Rodolfo's love for Catherine causes jealously between him and Eddie. ...read more.

Conclusion

I think this scene is full of sexual meaning showing that Eddie seems to have an underlying sexual desire (consciously or unconsciously). This double meaning is not very clear in the text (because we are reading the play). It might be very obvious on stage especially when an actor playing the part of Eddie could convey the double meaning of it. I think the Sicilian codes played a major part in the development in the play. They caused the development of almost all if not all of the problems experienced by Eddie Carbone in the end of the play; for e.g. if the Sicilian code had not made him take in his cousins he may not have done or if they had come at least they may not have stayed so long, also if the Sicilian code did not spell out what a man was supposed to do for his wife this may have caused less conflict between Eddie and Rodolfo as Eddie would have had less reasons for him not to be able to look after Catherine and may have been forced into submission, also if they had lived by American laws then he may not have accepted him in the first place therefore if the Sicilian codes had not been in place the whole episode may not have occurred, this shows that Sicilian codes were essential to the development of the play. I had to get used of reading a play in which Alfieri was both chorus and a character. I found that Alfieri was a convenient mouthpiece for Miller's views and that the interview between him as a lawyer, and Eddie was an effective way of showing the audience a particular conflict between law and justice. Alfeiri played a significant role by explaning Miller's opinion because the story line could be perceived differently by each person that read the play. At the end of the play Alfieri as a chorus has a personal reaction to Eddie's death which brings together his two roles, and for me, this was a convincing way dramatically to conclude "A View from the Bridge". ...read more.

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