• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller -An analysis of Eddie Carbone’s character-

Extracts from this document...


A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller -An analysis of Eddie Carbone's character- In "A View from the Bridge", Miller describes a situation in which a man is forced by his emotions to betray himself and the local society, to betray something he believed his whole life. The man in question is Eddie Carbone, a poor and hard-working longshoreman of Sicilian origin. His character is defined both by his society's values on the one hand and by his forceful and emotive nature on the other. The conflicts between these two aspects of Eddie's character ultimately result in his self-destruction. Eddie lives in a Brooklyn slum with his wife, Beatrice, and his niece, Catherine, who he has brought up as his daughter since the death of his sister. Eddie has an unacknowledged and obsessive love of Catherine who is now an attractive young woman. This hidden love is the "driving force" behind Eddie throughout the play; mixed with jealousy it is the cause of his actions leading to self-destruction. Eddie's wife invites two Sicilian cousins, illegal immigrants, to stay at their home, a fact that must remain hidden from the Immigration authorities. The elder cousin, Marco, is a strong man and is married and Eddie initially gets along very well with him. The younger cousin, Marco's brother Rodolpho, is fair-haired, handsome, unmarried and not so strong. ...read more.


Eddie had a simple and hard life in which he worked in the New York docks and lived in a Brooklyn slum. The play described him moving from place to place looking for work when work was scarce and at times going hungry in order for his family to eat. Miller very much describes him as a character that will do what is "right" and what is "right" is, in Eddie's case, determined by the virtues and attitudes of the Sicilian and Italian environment into which he was born and raised. This environment gave him a conservative attitude towards life, family and in particular the role of men and women. Towards the beginning of the play, Eddie talks with Beatrice and Catherine about the fate of a boy in the neighbourhood who betrayed some relatives to the immigration authorities. Eddie clearly shows his attitudes towards "traitors" of this kind by saying: "You'll never see him no more, a guy do a thing like that?" Sicilian pride and the views of society are very important to Eddie. This is shown throughout the play but most forcefully in the final scene where Eddie demands Marco to apologise to him for "lying" in front of the neighbourhood. Eddie is not, however, a simple character that is defined entirely by the society that has produced him. ...read more.


She called him a "rat" and told him the he "belongs to the sewers". When Rodolpho apologised Eddie just ignored him, although Rodolpho was the one who stirred things up by wanting to marry Catherine. Eddie now wanted is an apology from Marco, so he could get his name back, who really did not have much to apologise for, as Eddie was the one who betrayed him. Eddie knew that Marco was stronger (Marco showed that to Eddie when he challenged Eddie to lift a chair with one hand) and that if it had come to a fight he would be the one to get hurt. In the end Eddie was killed because Marco was angry and wanted an apology as well. Eddie, though perhaps to an extent unknowingly, wanted both Catherine and for himself to be true to his Sicilian attitudes and upbringing. This is what leads the narrator, Alfieri to state, "it is better to settle for half" than to be uncompromising like Eddie. Eddie was, in a strange way, true to himself and his contradictory character. He did what the combination of his emotions and attitudes made him do. The reader can either detest Eddie's hypocrisy or admire the way in which Eddie refused to "settle for half". The play is very simple but leaves a powerful impression on the reader. This powerful impression is created by the way, in which Eddie betrays himself. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Arthur Miller section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Arthur Miller essays

  1. How does Miller explore the character of Eddie Carbone in 'A View From the ...

    The law could not help Eddie with his problems, which is why he took matters into his own hands. The lawyer, Alfieri, explains why it is better to 'be civilised' and 'settle for half', in consequence restoring the normal moral order. Eddie's character has many different roles in the play.

  2. Who Or What Is To Blame For The Death Of Eddie Carbone?

    Eddie's character is very hard to understand; he says one thing but does another. At the beginning of the play when the two immigrants arrived, he told Catherine and Beatrice that the worse thing that someone can do in their community is tell the authorities about an illegal immigrant, especially, if they are from your family.

  1. How Does Arthur Miller Represent the Character of Eddie Carbone Throughout 'A View From ...

    He also talks about Eddie In the past tense, this is a major clue that Eddie dies at some time during the play ("This ones name was Eddie Carbone"). This speech by Alfieri leads us to believe that the play will follow the structure of a classic Greek Tragedy.

  2. "A View FromThe Bridge" by Arthur Miller, Staging the Boxing scene.

    Louis and Mike burst into laughter when they talk about Rodolpho and inform Eddie that Rodolpho has quite a sense of humour. Rodolpho and Catherine finally return from the movie. Eddie is relieved to hear that Rodolpho and Catherine went to the Brooklyn Paramount, as he does not want Catherine hanging around Times Square.

  1. Explain how Miller builds-up and develops the character of Eddies Carbone in the three ...

    He compares the play with Macbeth where again a tragic betrayal takes place. He says 'love is what fuels the violence in this play'. In an interview which took place by BBC he talks about the play .He portrays America as where all the hope was.

  2. In this essay I aim to explore how Arthur Miller develops the character of ...

    When Alfieri introduces us to Eddie, he refers to him using the past tense, "This one's name was Eddie Carbone". This may suggest to certain member's of the audience who were lucky enough to notice, that Eddie may die or perhaps change his name.

  1. The Character of Eddie Carbone

    Catherine also takes pleasure from the singing of Rodolfo which gets Eddie jealous making him increasingly agitated. When Eddie notices the heels that she is wearing he orders her to take them off, because they appear to him as though they would attract other men.

  2. "A view from the bridge" character analysis of Eddie

    He adds that the skirt is a bit too short ?but you gotta sit down sometimes?. Catherine disagrees with him and finds the skirt perfectly fine. Eddie is the alpha male in the house and tries to be in control of Catherine ?Catherine, I don?t want to be a pest, but I?m telling you, you?re walking wavy?.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work