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View from the Bridge, A

a play by Arthur Miller, published in 1955, revised in 1956. Reminiscent of a Greek tragedy, it is set amongst the longshoremen of New York, and deals with episodes in the life of a single family, which are described by the lawyer Alfieri, taking the role of ‘chorus’. Eddie and his wife give hospitality to two illegal Italian immigrants, Marco and Rodolpho, who are brothers of very different temperaments. Eddie takes to Marco but is suspicious of Rodolpho, whom he suspects of homosexual inclinations. His contempt turns to active hatred as Rodolpho makes advances to Catherine, Eddie's beloved niece, with a view to marriage. He convinces himself that Rodolpho is only interested in marrying her as a means of getting an American passport, and informs on the Italians. When the immigration authorities arrive to arrest the brothers, Marco springs to the attack and stabs Eddie to death. Much of the play's power derives from the extent to which the audience is left in doubt as to the true nature of events: we never know, for example, how far Eddie's suspicions about Rodolpho are correct and whether he himself has felt some attraction towards the other man. Miller's use of stagecraft is also singularly inventive and disciplined.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Richard Vaughan Biography to Rosanna Warren Biography