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Discuss Millers dramatic presentation of tension between George and Keller in this extract from "All My Sons".

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With close reference to detail of language and action, discuss Miller’s dramatic presentation of tension between George and Keller in the following extract. Miller begins the extract with George and Keller, who seem to be having a normal conversation. This however, soon escalates to more than an innocent discussion and we as the audience can already distinguish the tension rising between both characters within the first few lines. With the use of certain devices like stage directions and dialogue, Miller not only makes this scene gripping, but he also successfully portrays George and Keller in a new light the audience had not yet seen, perfectly conveying the tension they have between them. Immediately into the extract Keller says “A little man makes a mistake and they hang him by the thumbs” as if he is trying to reassure himself that the crime he committed was not as bad as it really was by saying “makes a mistake”. ...read more.


Almost instantly into the extract, Miller allows the audience to see the hostility George has against Keller. George is cautious around Keller and we observe him “studying him”. The scene seems to be an interrogation and we see Keller seem very “interested” at the fact George visited his father. In normal circumstances, it shouldn’t seem like a shock when a child visits their incarcerated father, however, the fact Keller was so interested that George went to see Steve Deever makes the scene feel like it is structured to insinuate Keller’s guilt and fear of being caught. We are also left to wonder if Keller is worried that George will believe his father claiming Keller is just as much guilty as he is. To attempt to conceal these secrets over and perhaps convince George that Keller is the good guy, we see Him tell George that “as far as (he’s) concerned… he’s got a place with (him)”, meaning George’s father. ...read more.


Additionally, the use of stage directions illuminates tension further. “With bitterness dominant” adds to the growing presentation of tension throughout this extract. Miller using stage directions successfully shows the audience the contrast between Joe’s brevity and George’s flippancy and bitterness towards him. Another example of stage directions being useful in the text would be when George and Keller’s discussion becomes heated and Keller keeps interrupting George, which causes George to become “distressed”, this shows the audience how the conversation is emotionally affecting the men and likely wouldn’t have been so successfully interpreted if it was told through discussion or conversation. Miller’s dramatic tension is easily identifiable in extract and is clearly weaved through out it. With the use of certain techniques and devices he is able to expose the tension between George and Keller to the audience effortlessly. This scene draws the audience’s attention whilst also allowing them to feel the same emotions the characters are facing in this extract. ...read more.

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