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How is the last scene (from ‘The lights rise on the apartment…’) a fitting and explosive conclusion to the play?

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A View from a Bridge-Arthur Millar Philippa Griffiths GCSE LITERATURE COURSEWORK ASSIGNMENT How is the last scene (from 'The lights rise on the apartment...') a fitting and explosive conclusion to the play? In order to understand the last scene you must know the story of the whole play which I will briefly describe." A View from a Bridge" shows an insight into the life of a longshoreman called Eddie Carbone, who originally came from Scilly but is now living in the country of America in a slum near Brooklyn Bridge. He shares his life with his wife Beatrice and the girl, Catherine, who he has brought up as his own daughter and has grown a subconscious fanatical possessiveness for. Catherine is becoming of the age where she is old enough to go out to work and support herself, wanting to explore the many different enjoyments life has which she has been shielded from before. Eddie wants to keep her as a unchanged child, but Beatrice does not agree and the slight tension which lies in the family bubbles over after the arrival of two Scilian immigrants, cousins of Beatrice, who come into the household. Eddie initially gets on well with the elder brother Marco, who possesses many qualities that Eddie admires but, the manly qualities that Marco has become a threat to Eddie as tension between him and the brothers build up. Rodolpho is young, unmarried and obviously attractive to Catherine. Eddie has an instant dislike towards him and is overridden with jealousy because of the affections he is gathering and returning to Catherine. His hateful feelings are eventually enough to denounce both brothers to the Immigration authorities, which in a Scilian community is an unforgivable crime and so Marco kills him in the very last scene of the play. In order to answer the question I must investigate the purpose of the play and conclude the possible reasons for characters actions. ...read more.


The rocking chair and arm-chair symbolise he is the man of the house. His head of the house position seems quite stable while he is in the arm-chair but in the last scene he 'surges' back and forth in the rocking chair which suggests he feels his postion is vunerable and it also suggests madness and obsession. He seems to have gradually changed after the arrival of the immigrants they must be the catalystscausing the change. Rodolpho is initially a catalyst as he threatens Eddie unintentionally on the subject of Catherine. Catherine seems to be attracted to him from the moment she sees him("He's practically blonde!") and Eddie obviously feels immediately threatened by his presence as he trys to get Catherine out of the room e.g. 'How's the coffee doing' She obviously wants to be engaged in conversation with Rodolpho as she comes back in from the kitchen to listen and forgets the coffee as Eddie again says to her ' What happened to the coffee?' and eventually Catherine still does not get the coffee as Beatrice says 'I'll get the coffee'. Eddie, as a father figure may have been concered about Catherine falling for a man he knows nothing about and does not what her to get her hopes up and also he could feel that Rodolpho is competing with him for Catherine's affections. However maybe he is worried Rodolopho is a threat to win Catherine on a more intimate level. Eddie obviously is very mixed up with his emotions and the feelings Rodolpho is stirring inside him are confusing him even more, he subconsciously knows to feel secure in his life he needs Catherine to fulfil many gaps in his it whether it be for a different kind of love than expected. Eddie obviously took a shine more to Marco than Rodolpho when they first met. Marco showed Eddie respect in a subservient manner (I want to tell you now Eddie-when you say go , we will go') ...read more.


'Katie, don't listen to him' Her feisty nature is making Eddie feel inadequate as a man. After reading the whole play Beatrice is obviously jealous of Catherine who Eddie gives a large proportion of his affections to but this jealousy is clothed behind her caring for Catherine and taking her side. Only when the situation gets extremely desperate does she confront Eddie with the feelings she has been stewing over,"You want something else Eddie and you can't have her.' She encouraged Catherine to be more independent and without his Catherine may have continued to obey Eddie. Catherine obviously has mixed emotions for Eddie as she is guilty of confusing him by giving mixed signals. She says she forgets to not go around in her slip but is this really her twisted sexual desire towards Eddie. Perhaps Catherine is more to blame than Beatrice as she was the one provoking Eddie and toying with his feelings. Rodolpho unintentionally fires up Eddie so he can not be blamed but Marco puts extra pressure on him, causing a crack.He perhaps understandably shows no respect to him and Eddie feels like he has taken his name. Marco could be seen as quite responsible for the tradey as he caused Eddies already aggravated emotions to spiral out of control. I do feel sympathy for Eddie in the last scene as he is being pulled in every direction by the main characters and like Marco is driven by primeval instincts. Marco and Eddie are both acting the way they are for instinctive reasons, so I am on either side . 'Most of the time now we settle for half and I like it better', this isa very important quote from The View from a Bridge as it sums up the play well. It leads me to have exactly the same view as Alfieri which is if Eddie and Marco had settled for half I would like it better. ...read more.

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