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View From a Bridge - Way Justice is Presented

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Introduction

Explore the way Arthur Miller writes about justice in "A View From The Bridge". Write about the characters' search for justice and the feeling that the law is sometimes inadequate. Consider the way in which Miller makes use of places in the play. Arthur Miller was born in New York City on October 17th, 1915 to Isidore and Augusta Miller. After the Wall Street Crash in 1929, he and his family moved to Brooklyn, a poor area of New York, where he saw and experienced hardships which allowed him to empathise with his Italian characters. After the restrictions on immigration in 1921 and 1924, legal Italian immigration was almost halted. However, the depression of the 1940s and then the Second World War brought many hardships, but the difference in standard of living between America and the south of Italy meant that many Italians still wanted to migrate. Marco and Rodolpho are two examples of Italians who were willing to take the risk and rely entirely on the support of American relatives until they could establish themselves as American citizens. The play is set in New York, in the Red Hook neighbourhood in the borough of Brooklyn. Red Hook is a homogeneous community of Italian immigrants. Most of the people in Red Hook originate from Sicily and the Sicilian code of honour is a running motif in the play. Italy represents homeland, origin and culture to the citizens of Red Hook. But, Italy represents different things to the main characters in the play. ...read more.

Middle

While Eddie is consumed in seeking justice for his problems he is blind to the injustice he is causing others. He is ignorant of his obsessive nature over Catherine and sees his actions as justifiable as those of a responsible guardian. He is unwilling to allow her to accept a job as a stenographer, "you'll never get nowheres unless you finish school" and gain independence and he is uncomfortable with her starting to wear more mature clothing, "I think it's too short, ain't it?" He also does not treat Beatrice as a loving husband should and although she obviously still loves him, "you're an angel! God'll bless you!" the feelings do not seem to be mutual. He resents that she has noticed his lack of affection and is quick to defend himself when she approaches the subject, "I ain't been feelin' good".e rHe resents the There are several moments in the play where the audience is given clues that Eddie's love for Catherine may not be normal, "he reaches out suddenly, draws her to him, and as she strives to free herself he kisses her on the mouth". Although Eddie seems unable to understand his feelings for his niece until the end of the play, other characters are aware. Beatrice is the first to express this possibility in her conversation with Catherine, "you still walk around in front of him in your slip". Whether she expresses her thoughts to Catherine to protect her from Eddie or because of her jealousy of Eddie's attraction to Catherine is not clear. ...read more.

Conclusion

and Rodolpho was prepared to take Catherine to Broadway, "I would like to go to Broadway once" however Eddie's furthest excursion was to Staten Island. Although Eddie is a free American citizen, Miller conveys the idea that Marco and Rodolpho were more free men as illegal immigrants than Eddie will ever be. Miller's use of places also shows aspects of the characters personalities; the fact that one of the first places Rodolpho visits is Broadway displays both his love of singing and his intent to live the "American Dream", "I want to be a citizen". In a new production of A View From The Bridge, I would make the presence of the telephone booth very obvious - perhaps having a very dim blue light shining on it until the point where Eddie makes the decision to call the Immigration Bureau, where the light would brighten. This would highlight the fact that the option of calling the Immigration Bureau was always an option for Eddie in the back of his mind and that he simply took the last fatal step towards his downfall when he stepped into the booth. I would also make the Carbones' living room very homely and quite small to emphasise the insularity of the family group and the American-Italian community at large. In A View From The Bridge, Arthur Miller shows that the law can often be seen as inadequate by telling the story of a family whose moral code does not agree with that of American Law. The main theme of the play - "settling for half" is displayed in that no character ends up with a perfect happy ending. Annabelle Gold - Caution 10SmG ...read more.

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