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

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

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

Eddie is a simple person who is a victim of circumstances but he also
contributes to his downfall.

I am going to start with his Sicilian background because I believe
that this is one of the most important things that motivates Eddie.

Coming from a Sicilian background Eddie believed that the man should
be the leader of the household and that everything goes by him first
concerning his family and that he should be very manly and stand up
for those close to him. You can see that he believes this by the way
he talks to Catherine. Catherine is talking to him about her job as a
stenographer and he says ''why didn't you ask me before you took a job
?'' this shows that he wants Catherine to ask for his permission
before accepting the job. He wants her to ask for permission so he
feels like he is the boss and because he wasn't consulted first he
feels threatened. This is one thing that lead to his downfall because
he was trying to be so manly he could not show any emotions, so he
kept everything inside and bottled it up.

His Sicilian background inter links with his 1950's notions of manhood
because his Sicilian background meant that he had to be very manly and
be the one who goes of to work. He shows his manliness when he starts
to be competitive with Marco and Rodolfo for instance when he starts
to teach him Boxing ''well come on , I'll teach you'' and then when
Marco showed Eddie that he could pick up a chair with one hand, Eddie
looked grumpy because he couldn't do it, he felt like he was beaten.
His notions of manhood also lead to his downfall because he was so
self indulgent that he could not take Alfieri's advice to let
Catherine do what she wanted to do.

Eddies neighbourhood motivates him a lot because he is so concerned
about his respect in the neighbourhood he forgets about what he is

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doing to the people close to him. This is shown when at the final
scene he kept on demanding respect ''wipin the neighbourhood with my
name like dirty rag ; I want my name back Marco , now gimme my name
and we go together to the wedding'' as a result of this Eddie died. He
was so concerned about what the neighbourhood thought of him because
he lived in Brooklyn which was a tough part of downtown New York and
it was a close nit community meaning that everyone knew everyone's
business and everyone was from the same background as Eddie and had
similar jobs so they were probably similar to Eddie, meaning that they
cared about what the community thought of them. So when they heard
what Marco had said and done to Eddie, they probably thought it would
be better not to talk to Eddie, as it might affect themselves. This
would of hurt Eddie knowing what the community thought of him, that's
why he was demanding respect and would not back down and I believe
this motivated him a lot knowing he had a bad reputation in the
community and the only way he could see to get his respect back would
be for Marco to say that he was wrong. And as a result of Marco not
giving 'Eddie's name back' Eddie died.

Eddie's sense of justice and fairness seemed to motivate him a lot. At
the beginning his sense of justice and fairness motivated him in a
good way for instance he thought he had to let Marco and Rodolfo stay
because it was the right thing to do ''then what the hell. It's an
honour' B., I mean it. I was just thinkin' before, comin' home,
suppose my father did not come to this country , and I was starvin'
like them over there …. and I had people in America who could keep me
a couple of months? The man would be honoured to lend me a place to
sleep''. This shows his fairness but towards the end his sense justice
and fairness seemed to get worse. For instance in the middle of the
story he grasses on Marco and Rodolfo

''give me the number of the Immigration Bureau .Thanks I want to
report something. Illegal Immigrants .Two of them. That's right.
Four-forty-one Saxon Street Brooklyn, yeah. Ground floor. Heh? I'm
just around the neighbourhood , that's all. Heh?'' Eddie did this
because he thought this was the best thing to do for everyone
concerned but he was wrong because as a result of this Eddie ended up
dead.

I think his secret desire for Catherine motivates him a great deal in
a way that he is so protective of her that he does not want her going
out or wearing revealing clothes this is shown when he says "I think
it's too short" and he didn't like the way she walked "now don't
aggravate me Katie you are walkin wavy" he probably didn't like the
way she walked because it probably got attention from men and Eddie
didn't like that because in a way he thought Catherine was his. He
also says "you ain't all the girls" this is Eddie saying you are not
all the girls your my girl. He doesn't like the way she walks and
dresses and that she is getting a job because all these things show
that she is becoming a woman and Eddie doesn't like this, so he is
motivated to protect her as much as possible. He was so strict with
her as she was growing up, as soon as she saw a boy (Rodolfo) she
literally jumped at him. Eddie's secret desire for Catherine is also
incorporated in his self interest because all he could think about was
himself and he didn't look at how happy Catherine was with Rodolfo,
all he cared about was trying to break them up and he tried to do this
by phoning the Immigration Bureau but all this caused was Catherine
and himself to grow apart and for Catherine to finally see what type
of man he was. He was so interested in himself that he kept on
demanding respect from Marco "Wipin the neighbourhood with my name
Marco ,now gimme my name and we go together to the wedding" here he
was so interested in what other people thought of him that he couldn't
see how it was destroying his marriage with Beatrice, his relationship
with Catherine that eventually it would destroyed him, all because he
was so motivated to thinking only about himself.

Finally, also jealousy motivates Eddie to doing outrageous and
terrible things because he was jealous of Rodolfo and Catherine's
relationship. For instance when he kissed Catherine and Rodolfo "he
kisses her on the mouth" and "and suddenly kisses him" I think he does
this because he is jealous of what they have together, because of this
Eddie thinks that Rodolfo is gay. Eddie thinks if he kisses Rodolfo,
Catherine might realise that he is gay. Eddie is jealous because he
knows he can not have her so he try's to make sure no one else can but
he does not succeed he just drives her away from him.

Overall I think that many things motivate Eddie but the most important
thing is his secret desire for Catherine but he could never come to
terms with the fact that he did not own her. I think this is also why
he eventually died because he could not let go.



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