A View From the Bridge

by Arthur Miller

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In Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge, what would the story's theme fall into: innocence and experience, conformity and rebellion, or love and hate?

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A compelling argument can be made for any of these contrasting pairs of themes, depending on which characters and stories are emphasized.

The unhealthy love of Eddie for Catherine is contrasted to the more wholesome romantic love between her and Rodolpho. Familial love from her mother Beatrice and his brother Marci also plays an important role. Eddie and the brothers can be seen as hating each other, especially in light of the outcome.

Innocence and experience fit with these relationships and events as well. Rodolpho and Marco not only have to learn US culture, but must become familiar with immigration legalities. Together with Catherine, they must face Eddie's betrayal. For her especially, learning that her uncle is not who she thought he was and falling in love are parts of losing her innocence.

Conformity and rebellion also fit Catherine very well, as she must reject her uncle's patriarchal domination. Eddie conforms to the letter of the law regarding the Italian brothers, whose actions technically break the law but conform to the dominant social mores of the Italian immigrant community. Rodolpho's difference from conventional masculine external representations might mark him as a nonconformist if not precisely a rebel.

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