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How does the structure of, A View From The Bridge help us understand the tragedy of Eddie Carbone?

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Introduction

How does the structure of, A View From The Bridge help us understand the tragedy of Eddie Carbone? Arthur Miller in recent years has become one of the world's most important and influential playwrights. The plays he produces give a deep understanding of how the characters think. Especially when they find themselves in awkward or bad situations, such as, misplaced love. The play, which this essay is going to investigate, is 'A View From The Bridge'. This is one of many which Miller has written. However it is very different. Miller had set himself a task, to write a Modern Greek tragedy. Greek tragedies feature around a hero who has a fatal flaw, which leads to his or her death. Throughout 'A View From The Bridge' there are several elements that resemble Greek drama. Eddie is the tragic, mad character who is helpless in the face of his own terrible fate. Alfieri acts as the chorus in the play. He provides commentary on the action of the drama. Eddie Carbone is an epic character; he makes bold moves and does things that are completely out of the ordinary. It is evident from the beginning of 'A View From The Bridge' that it will end in a tragedy. Alfieri is a lawyer in his fifties who works for the Sicilian community in Brooklyn. He opens the play with a concise but full account of what life used to be like and is like in that particular community. The audience knows from that speech everything about Alfieri and about the community in Red Hook. He launches into graphic detail about past gangsters and murders and about how justice is very important to the Italians. The community is the 'Gullet of New York', which is swallowing the tonnage of the world. Alfieri speaks as though Red Hook has swallowed up all the complication of the world, and is now reduced to a slum. ...read more.

Middle

Eddie cannot stand this attention, so he stops Rodolpho with the excuse that he will be 'picked up'. Eddie realises that because he was able to get Rodolpho to be quiet so swiftly he is in charge, and therefore, what he says goes. The stage directions say, "He rose with iron control". This happens as he is realising his power. Eddie then picks Catherine to pieces in front of everyone. Just because she is wearing high heels. Eddie just didn't like the fact that Catherine put on high heels to make a good impression on a young man Rodolpho. This time Catherine is angry but still obedient. Catherine is suppressing her anger, but it may escalate later. Eddie seems to think that he has control, daring anymore to rival his position. Alfieri enters and tells us that Eddie never expected to have a destiny. His comment also confirms out thoughts that from this pint the relationship between Eddie and Catherine will inevitably change dramatically. It is already obvious that Rodolpho excites Catherine and because he has dreams, Eddie will most certainly be jealous. Beatrice being Eddie's wife brings important aspects to the play. As the focus of desire for Beatrice has been transferred to Catherine. It is "After eight" and Catherine and Rodolpho are still not back, Eddie begins to get up tight. Beatrice confronts Eddie about causing a scene when Catherine and Rodolpho come home from a date. Beatrice senses his jealousy and addresses it, she asks, "What's so terrible about him?" It is at this point that Eddie voices his concern that Rodolpho is weird because he sings, and he has been calling him "Paper Dolls" and "Canary". He also criticises his "wacky hair" which makes him look like a "chorus girl" Eddie uses anything he can to make Rodolpho seem unfit for Catherine, and takes great pains to try to prove that he is homosexual. ...read more.

Conclusion

By this time, the climax has been reached and Marco insults Eddie and accuses him of killing his children. Catherine goes with Rodolpho to get Marco bail. Catherine still wants Eddie to come to her wedding, Beatrice walks up to Eddie with fear, "I'll be back in about an hour, Eddie, all right?" she says. The audience recognise the dramatic tension here as Eddie's 'Rocking' becomes more intense. Quietly and drained as though he had given up hope Eddie replies with, "What have I been talking to myself again?" The audience see tension between Eddie and Beatrice's relationship. Eddie's pride prevents it and prevents Beatrice from going to the Wedding. The dramatic tension keeps on rising as Catherine walks in to the room and realises what the scenario is. She starts to express her anger in a way not shown in the play previously, when she says, 'Who the hell do you think you are' to Eddie. She seems to have broken all emotional ties with him, her love for him has turned to hate, she calls him a 'Rat' and is prepared never to see him again, although she does tell the dying Eddie 'I never meant to do nothing bad to you'. Marco after a surge of anger finds Eddie and Eddie tries to stab Marco, but Marco turns the knife and Eddie dies. Ad all the events fell into place, Eddie's last words were 'My B'. This shows that he was caring and he finally told Beatrice in two words how much she meant to him, the Eddie way. Eddie Carbone is killed by his own knife, suggesting that it was he who was to blame for his own downfall. 'Alfieri who is the Narrator throughout the play leaves us at the end of the play with a serious question, "Has justice been done, should we settle for half?" Whether we like it or we don't, society always gets involved in relations. The structure of, 'A View From The Bridge' helped us to understand the tragedy of Eddie Carbone, In that he was the cause of his own downfall. Katie ...read more.

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