Analysis of end of Act 1 Essay

Published: 2020-04-22 15:24:05
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Arthur Miller employs a significant amount of dramatic devices throughout the play. Act One foreshadows the fate of the characters in such a strategically manner, with intricacies of the dramatic devices that lead us onto believing that Act Two will be a complete disaster from the initial stage directions. In this essay, I will go onto doing in-depth analysis of the dramatic devices utilized at the end of Act One. The first form of dramatic device that will be analyzed is the use of Similes. There are a numerous amount of similes throughout the play itself used in satirical tones as well as being a serious and significant phrase in the play.

The first simile that was encountered is His eyes were like tunnels. In terms of structure, the line is very cunningly placed on a new line. The significance of it being on a new line, is that it not only displays it for the audience very strikingly, but it also highlights its importance. The mere simplicity of the use of this device displays how important the sentence is, which foreshadows the inevitable fate of Eddie Carbone. In terms of language, the fact that Miller chose to compare Eddies eyes to tunnels makes it obvious to the audience that he is only aiming for one thing-Catherine. Tunnels are usually renowned as only having one-way of getting out, one exit. They also are associated with joy; in terms of the light being at the end of the tunnel being something to look forward to, however once the end has been reached, it turns out to be lesser than expected.

This echoes the act of Eddie thinking that snitching would be something that would affect him positively in the long run (being the light in the tunnel) but turns out to be a regretted action as it turns out to be a tragedy; when things dont go as well as expected. This line shows the theme of inevitable fate that runs throughout the play, which is Eddies one mistake, which costs the characters their lives. A similar technique employed by Miller is in the phrase The heads turnin like windmills this simile is an echo of how quickly the mens heads were turning to look at Catherine. Windmills are usually known as a sharp set of blades spinning at extremely high speeds which foreshadows the fact the mens heads are turning all at the speed of a windmill which is extremely fast.

The second form of dramatic device that will be analyzed is the adoption of short sentences in the play. The short sentence that was the most striking in the play was when Alfieri declared You have no recourse in the law, Eddie in terms of structure, this speech is very striking mainly due to its shortness. The reason why Arthur Miller made this sentence so short and simple was because he wanted the audience to know what point Alfieri is trying to bring across; which is simply the fact that the that the law cannot be changed to peoples liking. What makes the line even more direct is that Eddies name is placed at the end of the phrase.

The word recourse defines access to a person or thing for protection for example: to have recourse to the courts for justice. This foreshadows with the key theme of justice in the play, which is something, that none of the characters seem to have experienced. Another significant phrase in the play is when Eddie says, The guy aint right Mr. Alfieri this symbolizes the utter, hatred and disgust that Eddie has towards Rodolpho. To also highlight how much Eddie doesnt have much of a liking toward Rodolpho, he refers to him as giving him the heebie jeebies. The use of a rhyming phrase makes it seem more significant and easier for the audience to remember. Usually, when someone mentions something giving him or her the heebie jeebies is usually when its scary, which is very true as Eddie, is afraid of Rodolpho in a way. Hes afraid that he will take away his Catherine.

The next form of dramatic device employed by Miller is the existence of stage props and stage directions, which in their simplicity have a whole story to foretell. During the scene where Rodolpho is dancing with Catherine, Eddie has a newspaper in his hand; which acts as diverting his attention from being jealous. In the stage directions, he is referred to as unconsciously twisting the newspaper into a tight roll, which reflects his exact emotions whilst they are dancing. The fact that the whole concept of him twisting the newspaper is unconscious is that it became so natural for him to do, as he has no control over himself anymore, due to Catherine being taken away from him.

The mere simplicity of the newspaper being in the play and in Eddie Carbones hands is so that Eddie can still be watching Catherine without raising any sort of suspicion to the others of his incest sentiments. Another key part of the play is when Mr. Alfieri is introduced. This happens at the very beginning when the area is being described, when Mr. Alfieri is introduced he is described as a lawyer in his fifties which gives the audience a clear idea of his status straight away since lawyers are of very eminent status. He crosses the stage to his desk, removes his hat, this line has two important words Desk and hat.

The word Desk at the time the play was set represents of high value and high respect since he is someone who controls the law, which is something that foreshadows a big theme in the play- Justice. When Mr. Alfieri is about to speak to the audience he removes his hat to show the audience the amount of respect he has toward the audience. Removing his hat to his desk also shows how much Mr. Alfieri respects the law and how committed he is to every single word in the book of Law. The last significant stage prop and stage direction is the chair in the last part of Act 1. From the moment that Marco gets up to defend Rodolpho, asking Eddie to lift the chair from one leg, it is inevitable fate from that action on, that Eddies downfall takes place.

The fact that he couldnt lift the chair and Marco could, shows the audience how Marco is more humble in his strength, rather than actually hitting Eddie literally, he hurts him even more by insulting him in front of the whole family, by asking him merely Can you lift this chair? The simple request sounds too easy for Eddie, but then when he actually attempts to lift it, he fails twice. His one falter in the scene gives us a hint of what is to come in the forthcoming scenes, and makes the audience feel that worse is to come.

In conclusion, the aforementioned points all underline how much Miller cunningly uses the dramatic devices to really make the audience picture how much of a tragedy the play really was. I believe that the play couldnt have been as more understanding as it is, if the dramatic devices werent present, as they bring so much meaning to each and every action, despite how simple they are

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