Understanding Arthur Miller's Play "A View From The Bridge"

1376 words - 6 pages

In the play ‘A View from the Bridge’, an Italian-American family take in two illegal immigrants. The youngest of them, Rudolpho, falls in love with the niece of Beatrice, Catherine. Eddie Carbone, the main character, is driven by desire and lust, which eventually brings upon his own downfall. He calls the Immigration Bureau to arrest the two immigrants in an attempt to get his niece back, and so the scheme fails, and the play ends when Marco murders Eddie in a mere act of self-defence. Miller uses the character of Alfieri to increase dramatic tension throughout the play, doing so by introducing the idea of inevitability in the play. He establishes the character as a chorus, a component of early Greek theatre and tragedies. Alfieri basically expresses to the audience what the main character, Eddie Carbone, could not say, such as his fears or secrets. By knowing what will happen, and knowing how the play would end, whether a happy ending or sad, the principle of certainty and inevitability is revealed. Alfieri isn’t even capable of changing anything, altering the future, which also increases dramatic tension in the play. Throughout, Alfieri’s roles are obvious; he’s both the family lawyer and also the narrator of the play.
Alfieri is the narrator of the story, setting the scene, and helping the audience understand the story better. He tells us more about the characters and also provides background information that we might not have known. In the play, Alfieri also provides characters with the insight they could need, which is also a characteristic of the chorus. He does this with Eddie, persuading him to stop quarrelling with Marco when they were jailed. Alfieri as a narrator also makes the audience become more involved while he plays with their emotions. He is respected by all, and also very knowledgeable, and since he’s a lawyer we are instantaneously forced to believe Alfieri and what he says about the “bloody course”, which initiates a feeling of trust in the audience. Though, in reality, Alfieri is powerless to alter what he knows is certain to happen. He creates tension when he says – “Powerless I am as I watch”. The reason why this creates tension is because we, the audience, know Alfieri very well, we trust him, and know that he’s a person that can change things because of the fact that he’s a respected professional lawyer. We expect him to make change, for the better; however, in this situation he cannot alter the future. Here, we feel that Alfieri has no purpose, because he, in fact, cannot win this case. We therefore lose trust in him given that he’s unable to mend the “bloody course” that the characters are about to embark on.
Alfieri is basically a narrator who looks into the “dark tunnels” of Eddie’s eyes and wishes he could ring an alarm to stop his downfall, which is evident as shown in this quote – “I’m not only telling you now, I’m warning you”. Alfieri explains in the beginning of the play that he has already experienced a...

Find Another Essay On Understanding Arthur Miller's Play "A View From The Bridge"

Eddie's Death in Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge

1866 words - 7 pages Eddie's Death in Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge Arthur Miller described this play as being "the slum that faces the bay on the seaward side of Brooklyn Bridge…the gullet of New York" Arthur Miller was born on October 1915, in New York City. His parents were both immigrants to the USA. Miller's family lived in prosperity due to the success of his father's clothing manufacturing business. However as the

Tension in Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge

2749 words - 11 pages Tension in Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge In “A View From the Bridge”, Arthur Miller explores a variety of themes in the relationships between the main characters in order to build tension for the audience. Firstly, through Eddie’s talk with Alfieri, we can see that he is jealous of Rodolfo’s relationship with Catherine, and his eventual loss of authority in his own house leads to anger and a desire to once

Symbolism in Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge

741 words - 3 pages In Arthur Miller’s tragic drama, ‘A View from the Bridge’, we see that the bridge itself is a symbol of the linking of two cultures, Italian (namely Sicilian) and American (namely New York), whereby the manifestation of these two cultures dwell in Red Hook, Brooklyn. Despite this, differences between the two are distinctly evident from page 17 to 18, and it is the purpose of this essay to discuss how Miller conveys these differences in the given

Eddie Carbone in Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge

2247 words - 9 pages In this essay I will discuss how the view’s of Eddie Carbone, the lead role in “A View From The Bridge”, changes among the audience. I plan to go through the script and note any important scenes which I will then analyse in the audience’s perspective. A View From The Bridge is a play written by Arthur Miller in 1955, which was originally arranged in rhymes but later was changed. Miller has written the play in conversational Brooklynese

Character Analysis of Willy Loman From Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge

5195 words - 21 pages Character Analysis of Willy Loman From Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge Arthur Miller introduces us to the character of Willy through the stage directions at the start of the play. Our first impression of Willy is that of an old, tired, hardworking man who gets home after everybody is in bed. We then learn that he has mood swings and massive dreams. As soon as Willy enters the house we get the feeling that

The Importance of Dramatic Tension in Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge

4436 words - 18 pages The Importance of Dramatic Tension in Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge Throughout A View from the Bridge, Arthur Miller creates and sustains dramatic tension to keep the audience’s attention. He also uses dramatic tension to guide and provoke the audience’s thoughts and responses towards A View from the Bridge. He does this by using different techniques, for example, posing unanswered questions in the audience’s

Exploring the Themes of Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge

3179 words - 13 pages Exploring the Themes of Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge East of Staten Island is Brooklyn, the second largest borough and the most populous. As a freestanding city Brooklyn, with its 1990 population of 2,300,664, would rank

A View from the Bridge - Arthur Miller

1009 words - 4 pages Miller decided to extend it into a two act play. He also modernised and made it more American, therefore making it more relatable to the audience. He also extended the role of women in the play, making the play have more depth and understanding to the character’s actions and thoughts.A view from the bridge is set in Brooklyn, where Eddie Cabinet lives with his wife Beatrice, and her niece, Catherine. Marco and Rodolfo, Beatrice’s cousins

A View From the Bridge - Arthur Miller

1421 words - 6 pages A View from the bridge by Arthur Miller Examine the ideas of manliness, hostility and aggression in 'a view from the bridge'. How are these ideas connected? In this essay I will examine the ideas of manliness, hostility and aggression are connected to each other in 'a view from the bridge'. The play is set in a slum near the Brooklyn Bridge. In the story the main character is Eddie carbone and we see many sides to this character

A View From the Bridge - Arthur Miller

1699 words - 7 pages A View From the Bridge 'He's like a weird'. This opinion of Rodolfo expressed by Eddie encapsulates the main theme of the 20th century play, 'A View From the Bridge', by Arthur Miller. Rodolfo is subject to Eddie's hostile feelings towards him, emotions like abhorrence, resentment, jealousy and aggression. Eddie's belief in manliness and masochistic behaviour is one explanation why he detests Rodolfo with such vehemence. To Eddie

The Dramatic Techniques Arthur Miller Uses in His Play A View From the Bridge

929 words - 4 pages The Dramatic Techniques Arthur Miller Uses in His Play A View From the Bridge 'A View from the Bridge' was written by Arthur Miller. It is set in the early 1950s, Miller was interested in the lives of dockworkers and longshoremen of New York's Brooklyn harbour, where he had worked and where the story is set. Miller heard the story from a lawyer friend who had mentioned that he knew of a longshoreman who rattled to the

Similar Essays

Summary Of Arthur Miller's Play, A View From The Bridge

972 words - 4 pages Arthur Miller’s play “A View From the Bridge” revolves around the downfall of a tragic hero Eddie Carbone, who happens to be a long shore man living in Red Hook, Brooklyn with his wife Beatrice and niece Catherine. The extract being examined is a scene in which Eddie reinforces the perils of betraying family, specifically reporting them as illegal immigrants to the Immigration Bureau. He does so through telling the story of Vinny Bolzano who

Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge

905 words - 4 pages Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge Today hostility is viewed upon as wrong, when "A View From the Bridge" was written, hostility made up part of the day-to-day running of people in this era. Today women are treated as equals and any discrimination is taken incredibly seriously, in the time the play written, women had very few rights and were constantly stereotyped and abused. Manliness, hostility and aggression play an important

Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge

1069 words - 4 pages Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge Manliness, Hostility and Aggression are all important in "A view from the bridge" where Eddie Carbone plays the main character he is a longshoreman working on the Brooklyn docks in New York. He tries to keep his status as "the man" in his household. He is very hostile towards Rodolfo because he thinks he is a homosexual. Marco knows Eddie feels this way about Rodolfo and is unhappy that Eddie

Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge

1438 words - 6 pages Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge 'A View From The Bridge' is set in early 1950's America at a time when it was very common for illegal crime syndicates to transport illegal immigrants into America for large sums of money. It is based around a small family who decide to have two of their relatives imported from Italy so they can try and make some money for their poor families back home. The play covers many