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English Literature

Themes

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In A View from the Bridge, the central themes are Love, Justice and the Law, and Codes of Honour. Together, they help us to learn about the characters and understand why they act as they do.

Love

There are various types of love explored in the play. From which characters do we learn about the different sorts of love?

Love in 'A View From the Bridge'

Type of LoveCharacters
Love of a family
  • Beatrice, Eddie and Catherine are first seen as a loving family.
  • Marco loves his family deeply. He has come to America to help them. He misses them a lot.
  • In the wider sense, Beatrice loves her family in Sicily enough to support her cousins. Family ties are very important.
Father - daughter love
  • Eddie and Catherine, although uncle and niece, have become more like a father and daughter. Eddie made a lot of sacrifices to provide Catherine with the best education he could.
Brotherly love
  • Marco and Rodolpho have a strong bond - great enough for Marco to lay down his life for his brother's cause.
Romantic / married love
  • Eddie and Beatrice's marriage is obviously not as strong as it used to be: Beatrice asks, "When am I gonna be a wife again, Eddie?" They have not slept together for months.
  • Catherine and Rodolpho quickly fall deeply in love.
  • Eddie's love for Catherine has become sexual, even though he refuses to admit it. This is the cause of the friction in his own marriage and the dispute with Rodolpho and Marco.
Love of a place
  • Rodolpho and Marco love their homeland.
  • Rodolpho also loves America. Catherine says, "he's crazy for New York."

The play shows us that love is not always beautiful - it is responsible for all the conflict [conflict: Tension caused by a disagreement between people with different opinions, facts or beliefs. ] between the characters. It is a deep passion that can create jealousy and cause pain both to the person who loves, the person who is loved and those around them. For Eddie, love also causes conflict within himself when he cannot admit to his illicit love for Catherine.

What do you imagine happens to the lovers Catherine and Rodolpho at the end of the play? Do they go on to find happiness? What about Beatrice?

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