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Exploring the relationship between Eddie and Catherine as it develops throughout the play 'A View from the Bridge' .

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Introduction

Exploring the relationship between Eddie and Catherine as it develops throughout the play 'A View from the Bridge' is a play centred around the life and loves of one man: Eddie Carbone. As the play develops, we see his personality become twisted, all because of the arrival of his wife's distant cousins. When Eddie finally realises and accepts what it is he feels, disaster strikes and inevitable tragedy occurs. Written by one of the most infamous playwrights of the 20th Century, Arthur Miller is a respected, intelligent and thought provoking man. This play is just an example of how someone's life can be instantly changed simply by the arrival of another human being. From a caring, loving, protective uncle, the character of Eddie Carbone morphs into a monster of incestuous lust and violent anger. When we are first introduced to the characters of Eddie and Catherine, we are shown how intimate and secure their relationship seems on the surface. Although Catherine acts like a child, pretending that she has no idea about how the world around her works, Eddie knows that she is so much more than that, with a higher level of intelligence and a much brighter future. However, even though Eddie has a strong plutonic bond with his niece, he finds it difficult to show her how he feels. When he first speaks to her, saying, "Where you goin' all dressed up?" he means for it to be advice, suggesting that she is dressed inappropriately and should consider wearing something else. However, it comes out more like a scalding, questioning her actions and the choices that she has made. From the beginning of the play, Catherine is strongly irritated by the way Eddie speaks to her, no matter how well he means. At this stage in the play, this irritability is irrelevant because the love between these two characters is too powerful for anything to break. During the current stages of their lives, their relationship is presently very strong and reliable. ...read more.

Middle

In America in the time of the Economic Depression, many people were illegally migrating from all over the world to America to seek a better life. If they were caught in America illegally, then they would be immediately deported back to their home country. However, the chance of being deported would have been less if the migrant had married an official citizen of the United States. In this case, if Rodolfo married Catherine then there would be less chance of Rodolfo being sent back to Italy. If someone in the audience then had felt that this was the only reason for Rodolfo's 'love', then they would have been outraged with his actions and felt that he should get what he deserves and be deported. Eddie's opinion about Rodolfo is made perfectly clear in this scene. He says to Alfieri what it is he thinks of him and his actions. The most prominent opinion is that "he ain't right", implying that Rodolfo is a homosexual and that the only reason he is marrying Catherine is in fact to get his American citizenship papers. This opinion has not just been made clear in this seen though. Throughout the play we see Eddie making comments to other characters about Rodolfo's sexual orientation, such as when he is complaining about how late Catherine and Rodolfo's date has taken, he says to Beatrice that he "just hope[s] that's his regular hair, that's all". In the 1930's, it was not very common for males to get their hair coloured, so if a man did then it was considered that there was something 'nor right' about them. Another opinion is that "even if he's a punk" he should still let Catherine go and "wish her luck". If Eddie were to do this, then he would not forgive himself and regret it for the rest of his life. This is why Eddie never gives up in his fight to keep Catherine for himself. ...read more.

Conclusion

But the most important decision that Catherine has made about Eddie is that he cannot let the ones he loves leave his so called 'parentally guiding' grasp. If he does lose a loved one, be it by death, moving location or to another man, he will try everything he can to try and get them back. This feeling of Catherine is what motivates the entire story and what causes Eddie to go to the extremes that he finally did go to. In Conclusion... Throughout the play, we see the character Eddie Carbone deteriorate as a husband, as an uncle and also as a human being. We realise what type of person he really is when he finds out that his niece is in love with another man and he gradually loses all sagacious control over his thoughts, words and actions. His wife may be the first person to notice how obvious his incestuous feelings have become, but it is not long before Marco, Rodolfo and unfortunately Catherine notice them too. The four major events that happen after this group realisation (the destruction of Catherine and Eddie's relationship, the kisses from Eddie to Catherine and Rodolfo, the barging in of the immigration officers and the climactic death of Eddie) are all caused by Eddie's irate actions and debauched feelings. The relationship between Eddie and Catherine was always doomed to end in tragedy, because from the first instance we see them speak together, there is clearly some friction and frustration between the two. This friction is made a lot more prominent as the story develops, and by comparing the monstrous creature the Eddie has turned into at the end of the play to the once innocent and protective person that Eddie once was at the beginning, it is easy to see how much difference simple emotions such as jealousy, lust, passion, hate and anger can do to a man and to those around him who he loves. ...read more.

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