This would then encourage the audience to feel sympathetic towards Beatrice because she is lacking the attention and affection from her husband, which is instead being given to Catherine. We can interpret this when she is advising Catherine “give him (Eddie) to understand that he can’t give you orders anymore”, and that she has to be her “own self”. She disagrees with the way Eddie controls Catherine and he is not accepting that she is old enough to make her own decisions and gain independence. She also seems jealous of Catherine; she says to Catherine, “you act like a baby…
when you throw yourself at him”. She is telling Catherine that she need to mature, then for Eddie to treat her like an adult, but also because now seventeen and is a grown women, so it becomes less appropriate to wear revealing clothes in the company of a male relative, rather than when you are younger. This suggests that Beatrice has noticed the attraction Eddie has to Catherine, which influences the audience further and to agree with her is highly likely. This is partly why Beatrice is encouraging Catherine to take the job and now to marry Rodolpho.
So again this allows the audience to find it easier to see things from Beatrice’s point of view as well as Catherine’s, so then see the negative side of Eddie. Eddie’s views about Rodolpho then lead him to ask advice from Alfieri, the engaged narrator. Eddie is so determined to stop the couple marrying; he tries to get Rodolpho convicted. He is certain that Rodolpho only wants to marry Catherine to receive an American passport. However he knows he has no solid evidence and therefore throughout the whole conversation with the lawyer he is embarrassing himself.
Even though Alfieri is repeatedly stating there is nothing he can do, Eddie still continues to suggest anything that will support his case, he even accuses Rodolpho of being gay, which basically sums up how confused and pathetically obsessed he is with Catherine. After all “there is nothing wrong about a girl falling in live with an immigrant”. Eddie’s reasons for his concerns appear to be invalid because Alfieri, a lawyer, therefore who is an expert in criminal law, is stating this.
This makes the audience trust Alfieri because he is able to interpret the situation fairly and because of his profession, he is regarded to have a high authority. Alfieri is separate from the other characters, in that he is looking at the situation from an outsider’s ‘eyes’, and as the narrator, he is often involves his own thoughts. This suggests that perhaps Muller is showing his point of view through the character of Alfieri. This explains the reasons for the audience to trust his judgement.
Eddie seems to realize his own feelings when he takes Alfieri’s comment the wrong way “she can’t marry you can she? ” so I think Alfieri is actually trying to shock eddie into a realisation with his comment. Eddie takes this literally, when Alfieri is only saying that Catherine can’t marry someone like Eddie, not him himself. Alfieri influences the audience’s view on Eddie because he also notices there is something wrong with Eddie’s intentions he implies that Eddie has “too much love” for Catherine without realizing.
Eddie feels there is no other way to get what he wants other than to inform the immigration that Rodolpho and Marco are living in the country illegally, even though he knows the serious consequences that would occur due to this drastic action. In the Italian culture, it was not seen as respectable to go against your family, as families were very ‘close knit’, secrets within the family were not suppose to be known by others out of the family.
This idea is introduced at the beginning of the play, when Alfieri tells Catherine about Vinny Balzano, the boy who was disowned by his family and disrespected by his neighbourhood, because he “snitched on his own uncle! ” so Eddie is contradicting himself when he does this. Which highlights his desperation and many would say unhealthy obsession over Catherine, as he has willingly sacrificed his status and recognition in the neighbourhood. So the audience, may be shocked at what he does which again adds to our negative view of his character.
They may even feel sorrow for Marco as throughout the play he had not disappointed Eddie in any way; in the end he was just supporting his brother. This makes Eddie seem more as the villain and more like what Catherine described him as “a rat”. However, in contrast, many would disagree with Eddie being described as a rat, because of the good aspects of his character. The way Eddie treats Catherine is how most parents and relatives would treat their ‘love ones’. Eddie is trying to be a father, which Catherine has not ever had.
To do this he guides and continuously gives her advice on how to live a happy and safe life. When he is concerned about how short her skirt is, he only has her interest at heart, he says, “You gotta keep your self more”. He also says earlier, “I don’t want you (Catherine) being pushed around, you got too big a heart”. He is concerned that she is not yet mature enough to handle the negative sides of ‘adult life’. He is informing her that in the ‘real world’ she cannot be so nai?? ve, because not everyone is as friendly as her.
This can effectively show that Eddie is a loving and caring man, who most was say is how most loving parents or guardians would behave. He is obviously concerned about Catherine’s well being when he is reluctant to let her take the stenographer job. We know this because he says “I want you to be with different people”, it is clear that is unhappy about the neighbourhood she will be working in, as it is an area where there are lots of sailors and plumbers work. They are lower class people who are not highly paid, so Eddie just wants Catherine to work in a “nice office…
a lawyer’s office”, somewhere of more higher class than they are at now, so she has a better life, when mixing with a better class of people. This is a perfectly reasonable comment and most of the audience would agree. Alfieri influences the audience because he genuinely has a high admiration for Eddie, this is clear by the way he describes him, he says this when the cousins first arrive, “Carbone…. works, raises his family…. gets old…. and now there was a trouble that would not go away”.
The audience can sympathise towards Eddie as Alfieri is portraying him as a “good man” who had “to be in a life that was hard and even”. All Eddie wants to do is live a reasonably happy life and be able to support his family, however now the cousins have come all the attention has shifted to them, even though Eddie is the one who is the ‘hero’, as he is letting the illegal immigrants stay at his home, it is a major responsibility to make sure they are not caught, but it also makes Eddie ore respectable because of it.
Rodolpho has now come and from Eddie’s point of view, taking Catherine away from him, he is not use to Catherine having an interest in someone else before because previously she always was very close to Eddie. This is common for most parents, it is always hard to accept that your child has to some day leave and fend for themselves. So the audience may understand Eddie’s worries, which does not make him a bad person. The fact that his relationship with Beatrice suffers, is perhaps because she does not give eddie as mush attention as Catherine does. Catherine seems to be more like the wife!
Mybe if Beatrice behaves more affectionate towards Eddie, he would be more interested in her and not turn to Catherine. Eddie confides in Alfieri for advice because he feels powerless, in the past he was able to inform Catherine when she is doing something wrong, he is always there to help her to do the right thing. Whereas now she wants to marry Rodolpho, there is nothing he can do to rescue her. Even Alfieri understands, “I have my own children. I understand”, this makes it clear to the audience that it is not unusual for Eddie to be concerned. In fact his reasons for his thoughts about Rodolpho, most would say are valid.
Many illegal immigrants would marry just to receive legal entry into the country. The audience can therefore understand why Eddie has these concerns and the fact that he does not realise he needs to let Catherine make her own mistakes, this shows his only intention is to provide the best for Catherine. Alfieri says to Eddie, “the child has to grow up and go away, and the man has to learn to forget”, this shows that Alfieri does not necessarily agree with Eddie, however he has high opinions of him because he recognises that his intentions are good.
After all Alfieri predicts what will happen consequently to Eddie’s actions, “I could have finished the story that afternoon…. asking myself why… I was so powerless to stop it”. This adds to the suspense, the audience get this clue that something negative is going to happen, this makes it more of a reason to only feel sympathy for him. Therefore Eddie seems far from “a rat who belongs in the sewer”, he is just confused and is unaware of his feeling for Catherine. The fact that Eddie has to take such a drastic action as to snitch to the immigration, shows how much he believed in what he thought was right.
If he had resulted to this because of his ‘unusual feelings’ for Catherine, do you not think that he would not have done such a tragic thing as to risk being disgraced from his family? Eddie obviously would not have done such a thing, considering that he well knew the serous consequences that would occur, if he were not certain that Rodolpho was marrying for the wrong reasons, he is clearly only thinking of Catharine’s welfare. To conclude my essay, I would say that Eddie is neither all good nor all bad.
I do not agree with him to tell the immigration, however some may say is it not the right thing to do rather than lying? However I think his intentions are always positive from the start. To start off with he is genuinely concerned about Rodolpho not being good enough for Catherine, all his reasons may not be valid, but it is not unusual to be reluctant to let go someone you love. In fact I think Catherine is partly to blame for Eddie’s growing obsession with her, from the start she has been giving him an enormous amount of affection, some would say is too much considering her age.
So her immaturity enabled Eddie to rely on her affection and when she finds interest in someone else, he has never experienced it before, so you cannot blame him for his jealousy. Therefore I think there is enough evidence to suggest that he is concerned about Catherine, however these concerns begin to develop in to an obsession, one thing leads to an other and by the end I think he has forgotten what his intentions were from the beginning.
This shows signs that he becomes power hungry, he is attempting to receive that power again, whilst finding every accuse in order to get Catherine back. I do not think he realises the feelings he has for Catherine, in fact I do not think he loves her anymore than is acceptable, as I said before he is dependent on her affection that he does not receive from Beatrice. He obviously becomes confused and does not think things through before he does them; he goes by his instincts, which unfortunately leads him to attempt the murder of Marco.
This ending, I think may influence the audience to describe Eddie as “a rat “, many would be able to see that his character portrayed in the play emphasises the good side of his character, which is more evident than the negative side. So overall I think the audience would think that Eddie is portrayed as a good man with good intentions, but the way in which he acts upon them are not always sensible, however I think even though the audience may disagree with some things he did, it is too extreme to describe him as “a rat”!