• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How does Arthur Miller use the climax of act 1 to create tension for the audience and present the key themes of the play?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How does Arthur Miller use the climax of act 1 to create tension for the audience and present the key themes of the play? In "A View From the Bridge", Arthur Miller explores a variety of themes in the relationships between the main characters in order to build tension for the audience. Firstly, through Eddie's talk with Alfieri, we can see that he is jealous of Rodolfo's relationship with Catherine, and his eventual loss of authority in his own house leads to anger and a desire to once again become the stereotypical alpha male. This creates tension because the audience knows that he will want his authority back, and as he gets more and more desperate, the audience may think that he would do anything to regain control over his household. Secondly, although early in the play Eddie appears to be overprotective of Catherine, the audience grows to see his hidden love for her, and he becomes either blind of his obsession with her, or just does not want to admit/see it. This helps to create tension because the suggestion of incest is highly tabooed in modern society, and the audience does not know if Eddie will act on his feelings. Moreover, there is more tension built in Eddie's relationship with Marco, as Eddie and the audience both have a moment of realisation at the very end of the first act that Eddie has met his ...read more.

Middle

This may suggest that Eddie does have Catherine's best interests in his mind, as he may feel that Rodolfo would not be able to look after or protect Catherine. This creates tension because up till now, it has been suggested that Eddie is only thinking about himself. Secondly, Eddie is shown to feel that he must maintain a high level of masculinity in order to keep authority in his household. He restricts any emotion that he might show; for example, he leaves when he feels Alfieri may see his emotion. This is shown by the stage directions: "He feels the threat of sobs, and with a helpless wave he goes out up the right ramp." This creates tension because if Eddie wishes to hide his emotion from everybody, including the man who he is most comfortable discussing private issues with, then he will have no form of release, and all his anger and frustration will build until it is so unbearable that he may unleash it on other characters. Tension is not only created by Eddie's love for Catherine, but also by the fact that he either hides it or is just blind of it himself. Miller suggests that he may be blind of his feelings when he shows Alfieri to say "His eyes were like tunnels;" this may suggest that Eddie has "tunnel-vision" which would imply, for example, that he has a narrow line of sight, or that he cannot see clearly. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, his attempts are to no avail as he is greatly pressured by Catherine and by Beatrice, who also wishes to show Eddie up at this time. Catherine is shown to say: "Come on." and Beatrice is shown to say: "Go ahead, dance." in approval. These create tension because it shows connotations of the fact that nobody agrees with Eddie, and this will upset him greatly, especially because his own wife has turned against him. Stage directions create tension for the audience in the next section as Eddie "has been unconsciously twisting the newspaper into a tight roll." This creates tension because he is so preoccupied with Rodolfo that he is unaware of what he is doing, as is suggested by the term "unconsciously". This short section climaxes quickly, as one line of dialogue later, the stage directions say: "He has bent the rolled paper and it suddenly tears into two." This creates tension because the audience may think that Eddie is pretending the newspaper is a limb of Rodolfo's, or something similar to that effect. It also creates tension because it suggests that Eddie is becoming closer to the point at which he can not sustain a calm nature for any longer. In conclusion, Arthur Miller creates tension in "A View From the Bridge" by exploring many themes. These include: masculinity, incest, pride, love, jealousy and obsession. Miller successfully uses these themes to build huge climaxes at many points throughout the play, and create vast quantities of tension for the audience. Ian Marder ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Arthur Miller section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Arthur Miller essays

  1. How does Arthur Miller build up tension in Act 1 of 'A view from ...

    she is expecting are illegal immigrants which could create problems and further anticipation to fuel the tension. The tension is building up. The characters then go on to talk about Catherine's job offer which turns Eddie's pleasant mood sour. The audience can tell that Beatrice and Catherine are apprehensive about

  2. Dicsuss the themes of masculinity and Hostillity in a View from a bridge. How ...

    Eddie says: "he sings. Right on the deck, all of a sudden, a whole song comes out of his mouth" and "Paper Doll, they're callin' him".

  1. "A View From the Bridge" - Show how Miller presents and develops the relationships ...

    It also shows what happens to those who betray. This whets the audience's appetite as we now become aware of the dangers of keeping an illegal immigrant and looks forward to what Eddie will do and it foreshadows the end of the play.

  2. How does Miller create tension at the end of act 1 of "A view ...

    off the phonograph, Eddie saying this has shown how he feels Rodolfo is really not welcome on the boats anymore because he thinks he is too feminine, and then to make his point clearer, he invites Marco and Rodolfo to a fight.

  1. How does Arthur Miller present characters who engage the emotions of the audience of ...

    This quotation is the most important in the novel. This is because it summarises the hardest part of Sicilian culture to understand; omerta. It also foreshadows Eddie's life after he tells immigration about Marco and Rodolfo. No matter how much he regrets or apologises for his decision, he can not take back what he said.

  2. A view from the bridge - how does arthur miller create tension

    Eddie may know the consequence of what he does, but remains powerless or too mad to stop it. Jealousy: When Catherine becomes attracted to Rodolpho, Eddie gets very jealous of Rodolpho. This creates tension between Eddie and Rodolpho. Eddie also blames Beatrice to be Jealous of Catherine.

  1. How Does Arthur Miller use Theatrical Techniques and Dramatic Devises to Create and Sustain ...

    At this point in the play I felt desperate for Elizabeth to tell the truth. Arthur Miller uses very powerful stage directions in The Crucible. He uses them for several reasons. One of the reasons is to describe a movement or action of a character.

  2. How does Arthur Miller use Eddie Carbone to create dramatic tension for the audience?

    He is reluctant to let Catherine move on and grow up 'you're a baby. You don't understand these things'. He has kept her as a child for longer than he should. She is always hanging around him, pleasing his every wish.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work