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Examining the ideas of how manliness, aggression and hostility are connected in "A View From The Bridge"

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Introduction

Examine the ideas of manliness, hostility and aggression in 'A View From The Bridge'. How are these ideas connected? "A View from the Bridge" is a play produced by Arthur Miller within the early years of the 50s - a year which defines the terminology of masculinity. The terms manliness, hostility and aggression seem to all sum up the basic morality of the characteristics portrayed in an "alpha male" - otherwise known as a male which acquires all the characteristics that define the typical male. However, in "A View from the Bridge", Arthur Miller seems to attempt to catch and portray what seems to be the idealistic term of an alpha male and personifies them into three different male characters; Eddie Carbone - the "husky, slightly overweight longshoreman" protagonist of the play; Rodolfo - the rather "light" looking and talented male of the three; and Marco - "the square built peasant" who seems "tender" and "quiet voiced" as assigned by the stage direction. The three male characters of the play seem to have unlike characteristic traits which eventually lead in the further disagreement of each other's "manliness". However, in the play, Miller cleverly assigns these characters with their distinctive masculinity in order to portray how manliness can easily lead to hostility and intentionally develop onto aggression, which inevitably determines the tragic ending of the play. ...read more.

Middle

The affect that this cause in advance to the play's tragic ending allows the audience to dictate the magnitude of each male's manliness in comparison with each other - this may provide evidential reasoning as to how and why Eddie dies in the end of the play. As each male character within "A View from the Bridge" is aware of the threat surrounding their masculinity caused by other males in the play, their presumed feeling of suspicion towards whether or not they are being threatened by the others' manliness eventually turns into hostility - a feature used mainly by Eddie in order to defend his views and thoughts of masculinity from the other characters in the play, such as Rodolfo. The hostility previewed by Eddie in the play prepares us for the conflict yet to come between the three - Eddie, Marco and Rodolfo. However, the conflict portrayed by each character towards the other is viewed for different reasons. For example, the tension formed between Eddie and Rodolfo is caused due to the love triangle formed with Catherine where as the conflict caused between Eddie and Marco, is, in Eddie's case, due to masculinity but, in Marco's case, due to defensive acts on behalf of his brother. ...read more.

Conclusion

But prior to the intrusion of Marco and Rodolfo to Eddie's life, we can see their masculinity form a thick gas of threat, clouding Eddie's own manliness and household dominance. Unfortunately, Eddie only realises how insignificant his masculinity is to the people he loves as he dies in Beatrice's arms. As Eddie utters the words "my B." before his last breath, the audience gets a mixture of messages as he contently says these words - could he be proud that he had succeeded to keep at least one thing he loves or has he realised that Beatrice is much more important than his egotistical manliness? As our journey from how manliness can convert onto hostility just by adding a dose of threat to the masculinity of a dominant male, and how hostility is transformed into aggression when hostile acts have no affect in the attempt of banishing a man's threat to his masculine side. Some may attempt to take serious measures just to prove how masculine they are, finalising that they are the best man in the situation. But what happens when you introduce a challenge without acknowledging the abilities of your opponent thus the consequences it may bring out beforehand? You get the inexplicable plot of "A View from the Bridge". ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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