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Extended Study on ‘A View From The Bridge – Arthur Miller’

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Introduction

Extended Study on 'A View From The Bridge - Arthur Miller' * Stage Portrait "The street and house-front of a tenement building. The front is skeletal entirely. The main acting area is the living-room-dining-room of Eddie's apartment. It is a worker's flat, clean, sparse, homely. There is a rocker down front; a round dining-table at centre, with chairs; and a portable phonograph. At the back are a bedroom door and an opening to the kitchen; none of these interiors is seen. At the right, forestage, a desk. This is Mr Alfieri's law office. There is also a telephone booth. This is not used until the last scenes, so it may not be covered or left in view. A stairway leads up to the apartment, and then farther up to the next storey, which is not seen. Ramps, representing the street, run upstage and off to the right and left." Arthur Miller, born in 1915, wrote this play in 1955. It is set in Brooklyn, New York, in the late 1940's. Its main focus is on an Italian-American family, and the issues they face. It has a strong pedigree with an American immigrant story base. The 'view from the bridge' is in a way the audience sitting on the fence watching the merging of this American culture dissolving the passions and identities of its inhabitants. ...read more.

Middle

MARCO spits into EDDIE's face." * Stage This is basically how I imagine the stage to be set up according to the description at the beginning of Act One. It is quite spaced out, giving the audience a larger area to watch, to keep their attention for longer. What is put on the stage and the size of each area is important to create the realism of the drama. Miller's use of props in the play is very specific and limited, as I mentioned before. Arthur Miller very effectively describes and includes only essential play details. This gives those performing a chance to add individual characteristics through extra props. The layout describes only the indispensable parts and props of the stage. Throughout the play, one by one, we see the relevance of each bit to the plot: o "Now CATHERINE gets up and puts a record on the phonograph - Paper Doll." This is where the phonograph in their apartment plays an important role, as Catherine uses it to challenge Eddie's authority by dancing with Rodolpho, or Rodolpho with Catherine. o The main story of how the personalities of these characters clash or merge happen at the dining table. It is the place where they discuss "oranges are orange" and "lemons are green." ...read more.

Conclusion

o Earlier mentioned was Beatrice's link to all of the characters. But in the end, ironically she's left with no one (as Eddie was killed, Catherine gets married to Rodolpho, and Marco is likely taken to court or sent back to Italy for the crime he had committed). o Catherine's close relationship with Eddie shown at the beginning of the play is torn down gradually. It disintegrates from her being vulnerable as she was 'almost in tears' when he disapproved of her, to her realizing her opportunity to become a lady and to defend herself, especially against Eddie. o Even after Alfieri warns Eddie that, "Put it out of your mind," Eddie carries out his plan to betray Marco and Rodolpho, even going against the rules set by the community. He follows in the footsteps of Vinny Bolzano, in spite of his discussion with Catherine and Beatrice at the beginning about how that incident was disgraceful. It does bring up real life occurrences, which some can probably relate to. I find that the extremes reached by it make it more of a successful play. It keeps tension, feelings and apprehension on the audience. We see how effectively Arthur Miller presents his plays. Together, the issues brought out in this play make us question our morals and opinions in our judgement of others. But then what qualifies one set of values above another? ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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