In this essay I will be discussing the relationship between Catherine and Eddie and how it changes during the play “A View From The Bridge “. Poverty in Italy was a big issue in the late 1940’s. even though there was nice beautiful scenery, getting work there was very hard. As Rodolfo says when Catherine suggests to move to Italy together on page 43 and 44, he reply’s “happier, what would you eat? You can’t cook the view”. The members of the community of Redhook, Brooklyn are very close, they look out for each other. Redhook is primarily illegal immigrants, who had moved to Redhook because of lack of unemployment in Italy.Order now
Miller chose this topic to base his play because he himself was a dockworker living in Redhook, Brooklyn, his parents were immigrants into the united states. He was from a Italian background. This is a modern version of a Greek tragedy. Catherine is Eddies niece in the play. At the beginning of the play, Eddie treats Catherine like his own daughter. When Catherine first enters the scene Eddies initial reaction to what Catherine is wearing which was a skirt, he advises her to pull it down because he knows what the men are like in Redhook, he is very protective.
Eddie says, quote, “Katie, I promised your mother on her deathbed, I’m responsible for youâ€¦” on page six. This tells us that he cares for her. Eddie portrays himself at the beginning of the play as a role model father and husband. Catherine is very naÃ¯ve and believes things which are told to her. She’s young and attractive, and she likes to be the centre of attention. Eddie on the other hand has a split personality, sometimes he can be a really sweet and loving father figure and other times he just releases rage inside him which he wants to let out.
When Marco and Rodolfo come to stay with Beatrice, Eddie and Catherine, Eddies attitude begins to change. He becomes even more protective over Catherine than he already is and becomes very defensive. On page 22, Catherine says to Rodolfo, ” you like sugar”, Rodolfo reply’s, ” sugar? Yes! I like sugar very much”. Rodolfo isn’t implying that he likes sugar literally, he means it in a dirty way. Eddie notice the tone in which Rodolfo speaks to Catherine and immediately cuts in and says to Catherine in an agitated tone, “its after eight”.
Eddie is not only aggravated at the fact that they are late, but the fact they went out in the first place. When Eddie got annoyed at Catherine and Rodolfo, Beatrice also notice the change in Eddies character. She starts to become jealous but she doesn’t let on because Eddies is treating Catherine more like a wife than eh treats Beatrice. At one stage in Act 1, Beatrice says smiling ” ah, go on, you’re jus jealous”. She says that like she’s joking but inside she knows that Eddie is slightly jealous of Rodolfo. Beatrice thinks Catherine is a threat towards her relationship with Eddie.
She confronts Eddie and asks him, ” when am I gonna be a wife again, Eddie? ” when Beatrice asked this Eddie tried to avoid the subject and steps back using the excuse that, he ” don’t feel good”. Slowly, slowly Eddie is pushing Beatrice away. Beatrice comments on how she saw Catherine in the bathroom when Eddie was shaving in his underwear, she tell Catherine she’s no longer twelve anymore she cannot through herself at Eddie.
Beatrice says on page 30 to Catherine, “I know, honey. But if you act like a baby he be treatin’ you like a baby”. he trying to tell Catherine to grow up a bit and act mature because she is around grown men. Catherine doesn’t seem to want to know and refuses to believe the idea even came into Beatrice’s head. Her ignorance take the best of her. Near the ending of Act 1, Eddie, Catherine, Beatrice, Rodolfo and Marco are all sitting in the living room, when Catherine decides to get up and put a record on the phonograph; ‘Paper Doll’ plays, Catherine flushed with revolt builds up the courage and asks Rodolfo if he wants to dance, Eddie freezes at this moment in time at first Rodolfo refuses but then stiffly excepts.
As the couple dance, the other three are having a conversation about Rodolfo. When Marco tell “B” and Eddie Rodolfo cooks. Eddie speaks in a sarcastic way, ” he a cook, too! “. Eddie is trying to imply that Rodolfo is “gay”. After a little while Rodolfo and Catherine stop dancing. Eddies becomes very annoyed when Catherine complements Rodolfo, he starts twisting the newspaper unconsciously in a tight roll. He becomes so angry inside he rips the paper in two, he gets up and confronts Marco. Eddie offers a boxing match with Marco, but Marco refuses at first, then he agrees to take him up on a challenge.
At first its just a light boxing match but then Eddie becomes more serious and aggressive, this is when Beatrice and jumps in and stops him. Rodolfo grabs Catherine hand and requests that she dances with him. Eddie at this stage of the play is very angry and wants to get back at Rodolfo in some way or another. Marco gets angry because of Eddies reaction towards the boxing match and decides to get even. He challenges Eddie to lift a chair up with one hand kneeling down. Eddie thinking he can do it try’s to lift the chair, he disappointedly fails.
Marco becomes face to face with Eddies, you can see the tension building. Marco lifts the chair above Eddie like a weapon, he has a glare of warning on his face; this is to show he is not afraid. The warning turns into a smile of triumph. Eddie starts to grow anguish when Catherine comes out from the bedroom, adjusting her dress at the beginning of Act 2. Eddie knows that Rodolfo and Catherine have just had sex but still says sarcastically, ” Rodolfo makin’ you a dress? “. Seeing Rodolfo come out of the bedroom makes Eddies arm jerk slightly in shock.
When Rodolfo nods testingly, Eddie becomes angry and tell Rodolfo to leave. Catherine immediately turns and walks towards the bedroom, when Eddie grabs her she tells him she need to get out of there. Eddie grabs Rodolfo and kisses him, Eddies is trying to prove that Rodolfo is gay. Catherine is shouting telling him to get off. Catherine pleads to Eddie and tell him she is not a baby anymore. Catherine at this stage is very angry and scared she just want to find a way to get out of there. Eddie goes to visit Alfieri, he tell Alfieri that he want to ring the immigration officers but something is holding him back.
He tell Alfieri how angry he is and will do anything to get rid of them. Alfieri warns Eddie not to ring the immigration officers but Eddie ignores him and rings. Eddie anonymously rings and tell the bureau where Marco and Rodolfo are. Eddie goes home and finds only Beatrice sitting there. In a surprised way he says, “where is everybody? “, at first “B” doesn’t answer but then says how she’s moving in with Mrs Dondero. When Beatrice tells Eddie Catherine’s getting pillows his initial reaction is he thinks she moving in with the two brothers but, Beatrice gets angry and says, “â€¦ I’m sick and tired of it”.
She’s upset that Eddie cares more about Catherine than his own wife, she even says that she wished she could have dropped dead. Eddie tries to make it out like Beatrice is blowing everything out of proportion, when he knows it his fault. On page 55 the immigration officers come to get the brothers, Eddie points them into the right direction and at this point Beatrice has a look of terror on her face towards Eddie. The officers take Marco away. Marco shouts out to Eddie, “that one! He killed my children! That one stole the food from my children! “. Eddie just says he is crazy.
Eddie does this for his own benefit he does it so that maybe if they are gone Catherine will be interested in him. But Catherine is in shock and is disgusted with Eddie for doing such a thing. Alfieri goes to Marco and tell him he can be released but he should not do anything to Eddie. Marco in rage of anger says “I’m gonna kill him”. Marco gets released and goes to find Eddie. At this point people can hear shouting on the street so the come to see what the commotion is all about. Eddie is speaking and makes Marco even more angrier then before. Eddie pulls out a knife, Louis tries to stop him but the moves back.
Marco shouts ” Anima-a-a-l! “, Eddie lunges with the knife but Marco turns it around and stabs Eddie. He fall to the floor before Marco, his final words are “my B”, he dies in her arms. Alfieri ends the story saying he that he will love Eddie and respect him anymore than any of his other clients because he tried so hard to get something he knew he couldn’t have. Relationship between Eddie and Catherine change dramatically during the play. Eddies jealousy took over his whole life for someone who’s relationship was no more than platonic toward him.