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Comment on the dramatic effectiveness of the first scene in Act 2 of A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller

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Introduction

Comment on the dramatic effectiveness of the first scene in Act two of 'A View from the Bridge' by Arthur Miller I am going to look at Arthur Miller's play; set in the 1950's when social and cultural ideas were very different from today. There was often immigration to America especially from Italy as there was a lot of unemployment and poverty there. People immigrated to America from Italy due to there being more employment opportunities and a better quality of life there; they hoped to earn money to send back to their family still in Italy. The people that organised their immigration would find them jobs so there was a high chance of them being employed and being able to support themselves and their family. In Italian society people tended to mind their own business and keep to themselves, although the honour of the family name was very important. Family structures and connections were also very important. Families would normally put their close family first before anything else, then their wider family and then their friends. This meant that if a member or members of their family were immigrating, they would do as much as possible to help them and take them in. ...read more.

Middle

I mean just if it turned out that way. Rodolpho: This is your question or his question?' The audience can tell that Rodolpho thinks about Eddie differently now to before the boxing. Before that Eddie was like a potential uncle to him but he has now realised how much Eddie hates him, or he's aware of something that he doesn't understand. Rodolpho takes his anger for Eddie out on Catherine and he answers her question in a way that the audience don't expect him to and shocks them. Catherine is also shocked and upset that he hasn't told her he loves her. Rodolpho attacks Catherine about Eddie: 'No; I will not marry you to live in Italy. I want you to be my wife and I want to be a citizen. Tell him that, or I will. Yes [He moves about angrily.] And tell him also, and tell yourself, please, that I am not beggar, and you are not a horse, a gift, a favour for a poor immigrant.' This shows Rodolpho is upset and angry that Eddie should suggest such a thing. He is proud and frustrated that Eddie and Catherine think of him this way. ...read more.

Conclusion

What just happened in the bedroom with Rodolpho might have helped her to make this decision. When Eddie intimately kisses her on the mouth he is showing that she is his not Rodolpho's. This is a shock to the audience and might cause them to wonder if Eddie wants a relationship with Catherine. Rodolpho pulls Eddies arm away and tells him to stop it. He is appalled by what Eddie has done and might also be jealous. He tells Eddie that Catherine will be his wife, demanding and taking control. Eddie mocks and taunts Rodolfo until Rodolpho flies at him and Eddie kisses him. This is completely unexpected and shocks the audience even more than when Eddie kisses Catherine. The audience are horrified, as is Catherine who has realised that Eddie thinks Rodolpho is gay and she doesn't know what to think. As Eddie leaves the apartment he tells Rodolpho to get out alone, threatening him. The audience are not sure if Catherine is going to go with him and it is almost left on a cliff hanger because they don't know what is going to happen. The lights go down leaving a tense atmosphere. This scene is particularly dramatically effective because of the fast pace and suspense. There is a lot of varying emotion and the audience never know what is going to happen next. ?? ?? ?? ?? Eleanor Luckcock L5R ...read more.

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