New GCSE English Literature syllabus revision - A View from the Bridge - Themes Part 1

3rd April 2017

New GCSE English Literature syllabus revision – Drama/Play/Theatre

A View from the Bridge – Themes (Part 1)

Key information to remember for A View from the Bridge:


  • The play, A View from the Bridge, was written by the American playwright Arthur Miller. First staged in 1955, the play is set in the 1950s in America. The characters live in an Italian American neighbourhood near the Brooklyn Bridge.

  • Arthur Miller got caught up in the McCarthy trials, a period when the American government thought that artists of the time were hiding communists. Arthur wrote the play showing a community which did hide and protect so called ‘unlawful’ behaviour.

  • The central character Eddie Carbone is a Longshoreman. He is married and part of the local community but has a secret desire and obsession for his niece, which is his undoing. As his niece grows up and no longer needs him he starts to lose his control over her and the choices she makes using her own free will.

  • The community protect their own against the law and help each other to earn a basic living in the docks and work yards. Immigrants from Italy/Sicily arrive looking for paid work and the modern excitement of America. To turn on your own is the worst thing you can do!  The importance of the safety of the community relies on you abiding by their rules and norms.

A View From The Bridge is a famous play which deals with themes of;

Telling tales

Human irrationality 

Abiding by community law


To learn more about the Themes in A View From The Bridge check out our A View From The Bridge - Themes Part 2 GCSE revision song and accompanying notes.


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