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Discuss Eddie Carbone as the tragic hero of the play

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Discuss Eddie Carbone as the tragic hero of the play "One who is neither villainous nor exceptionally virtuous, moving from happiness to misery through some frailty or error in judgement." The above opening quotation is from Aristotle, which is his view of what elements a tragic hero contains. This essay will investigate the destiny of the main character Eddie Carbone also known as a tragic hero, as illustrated by Arthur Miller in 'A view from a Bridge' against Aristotle's view of a tragic hero. The play takes place in Brooklyn in a working-class Italian-American neighbourhood which is hooked by a social code. Eddie Carbone a husband and supposedly father who raised an orphan niece as a daughter due to a death bed promise. A longshoreman working on the docks, working hard in life that was hard; on the other hand a good man not intentionally trying to be mean, but the downfall to his life faces him when his niece falls in love with one of the immigrants, a young handsome man, which is hard for Eddie to cope as his inner thought of his love for the niece is too much that he does not admit but is persistently protective as he is obsessed with her and is scared of anyone stealing her, in other words it shows his jealousy. Eddie seems to have an obsessive love for his niece Catherine which he covers up and puts the situation across that he is responsible for what she does; the truth is he doesn't want her to be in the company of other men or lose her to them: "Katie, you are walkin' wavy! ...read more.


Eddie moves from happiness to sadness when Beatrice's illegal immigrant cousins arrive from Italy as Catherine and Rodolpho seem to be attracted to one another, and start dating, and this worries Eddie greatly: Eddie: They must've seen every picture in Brooklyn by now. He's supposed to stay in the house when he ain't working. He ain't supposed to go advertising himself. Beatrice: Well, that's his trouble, what do you care? If they pick him up they pick him up, that's all. Come in the house... [Comes to him, now the subject is opened]: What's the matter with you? He's a nice kid, what do you want from him? Eddie: That's a nice kid? He gives me the heeby-jeebies. Beatrice [Smiling]: Ah, go on, you're just jealous. Eddie: Of him? Boy, you don't think much of me. The dialogue used here consists of many rhetorical questions, and the use of colloquial language and an unusual word choice is used 'heeby-jeebies.' This therefore tells us a great deal of what Eddie actually thinks and how strongly Eddie seems to be in love with Catherine, but does not admit this at any point in the play, but he is concerned about Catherine and the fact she is with Rodolpho. He can not bear this, and his jealousy puts an affect on why he finds Rodolpho not right. Beatrice proves that Eddie is jealous but he comes in anger and shows how he can be jealous of someone like Rodolpho who sings on the decks with a whole song out his mouth, with motions. ...read more.


Thanks. [He dials.] I want to report something. Illegal immigrants.Two of them. That's right...' The author creates the use of irony and shows how Eddie's passionate opposition to the marriage between Rodolpho and Catherine forces him to make this decision to report them up. It is ironic as his actions backfire and he loses his own honour and respect in the neighborhood. Also Eddie told the story of Vinnie Bolzano as if it was a terrible thing, but Eddie is in the same situation. Episodes after episodes occur of Eddie trying to cope with his inner violent reaction until he commits what his neighborhood consider the most shameful of crimes. This is a feature of a tragic hero as they always die in some way at the end. In this play Eddie dies by Marco coming back for revenge but Eddie approaches Marco with a knife, since Marco is strong, he turns Eddies arm and kills him with his own knife. The importance of the knife still in Eddies possession shows that he brought his own downfall, and the traces of his fingerprints are on it, shows he committed it himself. The image created is he brought his own death on himself, through his own error in judgment. Therefore Eddie is a tragic hero as he is not intentionally evil, his weakness of letting Catherine go causes him to suffer and move from happiness to misery eventually a wrong decision to his own death. ...read more.

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