Values In A View From The Bridge

1802 words - 7 pages

"What compels Eddie to abandon his beliefs and values?" Eddie tells Catherine and Beatrice at the outset that he believes loyalty is a very important and anybody who breaks the unwritten code deserves punishment. When he does betray the cousins, he makes it quite clear that he feels he himself has been betrayed. Beatrice voices what Eddie does not want to hear, his unhealthy relationship with Catherine. It is this relationship, his jealousy of Rodolfo and his own tortured mind which, in the end, force him to abandon his loyalty to the cousins, himself and to his family.Alfieri clearly announces the Sicilians' reluctance and suspicion, regarding American law, when he states in his opening speech that "lawyers are only thought of in connection with disaster" and that "in Sicily the law has not been a friendly idea since the Greeks were beaten." The Sicilians population have built up "three thousand years of distrust", consequently they have molded into a different tradition, a different code of justice, then the official written law. They regard this antique code of justice with particular pride and it remains unquestioned amongst them, even overriding the American law, since "Justice is very important here." Eddie being originally "starving like them over there" in Sicily, understands and obeys this code of justice. His critical question "how's he gonna show his face?" or "a guy do a thing like that?"(p.14) concerning Vinny Balzano, a fifteen years old child who "snitched" his uncle to the immigration bureau, an offensive act against the Justice, clearly illustrates Eddie's agreement with the Justice. Eddies manifests his respect for the principals, when he announces that he "would be honoured to lend [...] a place to sleep.". Eddie not only obey the code of justice, but believes it to be the right choice.At the beginning, Eddie proves to be obsessively protective over his niece. He uses excessive remarks such as " I think it's too short, ain't it? [...]givin' me the willies the way you walk down the street.[...] walkin' wavy […] heads turnin' like windmills." . Thought this seems like a natural response for Eddie's part, his feelings aren't purely a fatherly affection, as it will be revealed later. He tries to covers these obsessive reactions, by referring to her mother in ways such as ,''I promised your mother on her deathbed.", "I'm responsible for you.", "You're a baby you don't understand things." However these reasons cannot justify anymore as Catherine reaches a ripe age and Rodolfo enters in their lives. The fast growing relationship between Catherine and Rodolfo, triggers the hidden emotions of desire for Catherine in Eddie. Eddie's feeling rapidly develop from paranoid parental love to jealousy. We can observe this serious evolution in Eddie's character and attitude throughout the play.Since the beginning, Eddie shuns Rodolfo, "coming more and more to address Marco only", thus excluding him for the "man-society". But Eddie's...

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