Explore some of the main dramatic devices and techniques used by Miller to invite the audience’s empathetic response to Eddie’s tragic actions in ‘A View From The Bridge’. Arthur Miller’s, ‘A View From The Bridge’ allows us to witness the tragic consequences of one mans jealousy and an unforgivable crime to his family and friends. With his dramatic techniques in speech and in stage directions, Arthur Miller is able to create a dramatic atmosphere in many parts of his performance. He also provokes the audience to empathize with Eddie when using these skills.
The first section I studied was ‘The Phone-Call’. In this scene I think that Eddie is trying to do what he thinks is right. Alfieri can see what he is going to do but can’t stop him. Eddie can only see one answer to all of his problems. When Eddie and Alfieri are talking before the phone call, we are provoked to empathize with Eddie because of some of the things that Alfieri says. We know that Eddie is a strong willed man and will not be told what to do. Alfieri states, ‘The law is only a word, for what has the right to happen. ‘ Here Alfieri is trying to subtly hint towards the fact that Eddie is wrong.Order now
Miller makes us feel that Eddie is helpless and we empathize with him, he is alone and no one is able to set him on the right track. Another part is when Eddie becomes angered and uncomfortable with the situation. ‘ Her mother’ll turn over in the grave! (He gathers himself almost peremptorily)’ Eddie is determined to do something about his problem. We can see through Miller’s techniques that Eddie really wants this and would do anything for it. We do feel sorry for Eddie as the scene progresses because he is starting to realise that he has only one way out.
‘(Angering) Didn’t you hear what I told you? ‘ The Phone Box is a central image and because of this, Miller creates a tense atmosphere using a ‘lonely blue’ light on it. This signifies Eddie’s feelings and emotions. The audience can now relate to Eddie as a person in need of help. After the phone call to the immigration bureau, we can see that Eddie is in regret. The stage direction at the end of the phone call is most powerful of all out of this scene. ‘Evidently he is being questioned further, and he slowly hangs up. ‘
As the other caller gets into the depth of the conversation we can see that Eddie is coming to terms with what he has done. What with all of the anger built up inside of him, Eddie didn’t really think about the full consequence of what would happen after the phone call. Therefore as the call ended he had had the time to think it over. As it is something that most people do at times in their lives we are able to relate to Eddie. This makes us empathize with him; it is a mistake, which a lot of people make. We feel even more for Eddie when we realise that he is on his own from now on and no one is going to be there to help him.