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How does the opening scene of 'A View from the bridge' prepare the audience for the tragedy of this dramatic play?

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How does the opening scene of 'A View from the bridge' prepare the audience for the tragedy of this dramatic play? 'A View from the Bridge' is a dramatic play about two illegal immigrants, who travel from Italy to the Red Hook slum in New York and stay with their relatives-The Carbones. The play ends tragically with the death of Eddie Carbone and the play shows how the family are split up by jealousy, betrayal and mistrust. It is set during the aftermath of The Great Depression in the 1930s. The play was written in 1955 by the playwright Arthur Miller, who worked as a longshoreman in 1940 in Brooklyn. This play can be classed as a tragedy because the protagonist dies at the end. A tragedy is a play that has many disastrous events included in it and usually ends with the death of the main character-most of the time through a fault of their own. In this play Eddie Carbone is the protagonist and he is killed at the end of the play. Throughout the play many bad things happen, for example Eddie betrays Marco and Rodolpho. This essay will focus on the opening scene of the play from the beginning and up to the point just before the arrival of the illegal immigrants. ...read more.


events we are given the stage direction: '[EDDIE has appeared and has been pitching coins with the men and is highlighted among them. He is forty-a husky, slightly overweight longshoreman]' 'This one's name was Eddie Carbone' Says Alfieri. This tells the audience something negative is going to happen because he introduces Eddie just after saying how powerless he is and about how the events are 'bloody'. The audience understand that the play is about Eddie and that it is going to be tragic. In the opening scene the audience can sense tension in the relationships between the characters. Eddie and Beatrice appear to be a happy couple but later on in the scene they start arguing. When Eddie and Beatrice are arguing about Beatrice's, 'big heart', he says, 'Because as soon as you see a tired relative, I end up on the floor' 'When did you end up on the floor?' It is clear that Eddie is still upset that Beatrice put her relatives before him, the audience can sense the underlying tension in their relationship because in the first scene when they have their first moment of privacy on stage they start arguing with each other. Later on in the scene they argue about Catherine's future. Beatrice complains: '[she is angering] I don't understand you; she's seventeen years old, you gonna keep her in the house all her life?' ...read more.


He tells Catherine not to tell anyone, but he himself then tells the Immigration Bureau about Marco and Rodolpho. He does this out of desperation because he feels both jealous and threatened by Rodolpho. Eddie betrays both Marco and Rodolpho because of his love for Catherine. The audience can tell that Eddie was jealous of Rodolpho because he kept saying to both Catherine and Beatrice how Rodolpho was after his passport and that there was something not quite right about him. The audience can see that Eddie has many faults-his hypocrisy, jealousy, unnatural desire for Catherine. As a result they can see the play ending in tragedy because of these flaws. In effect, the 'Vinny Bolzano' story forewarns the audience of coming events and highlights Eddie's hypocrisy. What happened was that Vinny 'snitched' on his uncle, his brothers and father got so angry that they beat him up and disowned him. Miller cleverly used this story to foreshadow the events that were going to happen later and to emphasize Eddie's hypocrisy. Miller has created an effective piece of drama by using tension, foreshadowing and by developing the characters. I think the opening scene was successful in preparing the audience for the ending of this play because it indicated to the audience what was going to happen and therefore kept the audience interested through the use of tension and through the portrayal of the relationships between the characters. Nadia Ahmed 10D2 - 1 - ...read more.

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