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How does Arthur Miller explore the theme of masculinity in A View from the Bridge?

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Introduction

How does Arthur Miller explore the theme of masculinity in 'A view from the bridge'? Becca Howes 10s Masculinity is a very important subject in the play. Arthur Miller uses the three main male characters to show masculinity, whether it's through actions, or through words. Eddie, Marco and Rodolpho have different views on masculinity, and these change throughout the course of the play, as does their masculinity, which is questioned because of the views portrayed by the other characters in the play. There are other factors in the play that link to masculinity in different ways, such as; actions, speech, honour, betrayal, relationships, jealousy, aggression, loyalty, and many other factors. The play was set in Red Hook in Brooklyn, New York, where all the people living there knew about the illegal immigrants from Italy. However, to keep the honour that they have established they will not tell the authorities that they are there. In the play, Eddie mentions another character, Vinny; he lost his honour and therefore his masculinity, by telling the authorities that there were illegal immigrants living in the area, this is what could happen to any of the characters that we see in the play if the tell the authorities; so no-one will tell on the immigrants. The entire world of the play is dominated by men. The men have to be big, strong, silent and hard working; this is a traditional thing for the male characters. ...read more.

Middle

Beatrice noticed how he was around Catherine, and noticed that he was jealous of Rodolpho, so said to Eddie; "Ah, go on, you're just jealous" This shows that Eddie wasn't covering his feelings as well as he thought he was, because Beatrice picked up on them as well as his jealousy. Because he feels this way about Catherine he is jealous of Rodolpho when he finds out about the relationship between Catherine and Rodolpho. Eddie and Marco haven't really got on well since Marco and Rodolpho arrived in Red Hook, so they try and stay out of each others way, but are in some ways forced to talk, and at least be civil towards each other. But this isn't a honest relationship, and they will happily fight with each other, as we see at the end of the play. Eddie isn't sure how he feels towards Rodolpho, so sometimes he is kind, but other times he will challenge him, and be a but harsh to him. Rodolpho doesn't seem to mind, but Marco, Beatrice and Catherine will step in when Eddie is being horrible to him and stand up to Eddie for Rodolpho. Marco and Rodolpho are very close, as they are brothers, and will always look out for each other and help each other. Marco has a family in Italy and just wants best for them, so will work as much as he needs to so that he can send money to them, so they can eat and live better than they were. ...read more.

Conclusion

And even if they seem masculine, they will always meet someone that changes that, whether it is a very masculine man, or a very feminine man. People that you meet will change your views, maybe even your sexuality, in the play; this is shown by Marco, Eddie and Rodolpho. Eddie shows this, as he becomes less masculine and less dominant the longer he knows Marco and Rodolpho. Having Eddie as the tragic hero in the play also helps us understand the theme of masculinity, as he lost his honour because of his actions, and losing his honour led to the loss of masculinity. I have found that Eddie seems most masculine, but isn't as masculine as he seems. Rodolpho may seem gay because of his looks, and hobbies but this may not be true, and we found this out because he married Catherine. Marco always seemed dominant but towards the end of the story he quietened down but still found ways to show his strength, and therefore show his masculinity. By all of this I have learnt that people may try and seem better than they are to gain extra credibility, but at the end of the day, it's the people that are always themselves that come up tops in one way or another. Not everyone will get what they want, and not everyone will get what they deserve, but things happen for a reason and no matter how hard some one tries that can't be changed. ?? ?? ?? ?? Becca Howes 10s Miss Cox ...read more.

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