Eddie. If Eddie chooses the law over justice in turning Marco and Rodolpho in, Marcochooses his own form of justice over the law in killing Eddie.the law does not necessarily cover all issues of right and wrong adequately. Not all that islegal is right, and not all that is illegal is always wrong. But at the same time, the playcautions against taking justice into one’s own hands, which both Marco’s and Eddie’sactions reveal to be a dangerous, not to mention ineffective course of action.What they see as noble and honorable course of action (preventing marriage, avengingfamily dishonor) is in fact not within the law, but with justice. The law therefore goesagainst their traditional codes of honor. Maturity and Independence Over the course of the play, Catherine grows, matures, and attempts to achieve out herown independent life, while Eddie struggles to keep her under his control—and his roof.Catherine gradually matures, as she finds a job and begins to assert herself with the helpofBeatrice, who tells her not to act like a child anymore. Eddie misjudges Catherine’s
maturity and continues to see her as a young girl; because of this, he denies herindependence.Eddie is sad to see Catherine grow up, and tries to hold onto her as she matures andbecomes more independent. But even late in the play, it is questionable to what degreeCatherine really achieves independence.Given the play’s setting in the 1950s, in a traditional Italian immigrant community, itwould be difficult for a woman to achieve absolute independence. Catherine never completely achieves independence. Once she has fought against Eddie’sideas over her although she still cares about Eddie’s thoughts, she gets in a relationshipwith Rodolpho who also controls her and dominate her. Thus, even if Catherine stilldepends on others and her actions are partially dictated or influenced by others, thisshould not negate the fact of the big growth and maturation in her character, as shegradually becomes more of her own person, and learns to assert herself against thecontrolling, oppressive figure of Eddie.ManlinessEddie has a very narrow view of what it means to be a man.He believes he is a realman; he works hard to support his family and protects his territory and possessions. ToEddie, his possessions include Beatrice and Catherine and this is partly why he is so protectiveof Catherine. Eddie is suspicious of Rodolfo because he has “unmanly” interests: cooking,singing, sewing and dancing.He believes he is unnatural and hints that he thinks he ishomosexual, something which was regarded as a crime at the time. However, Eddie’s ownmanliness is questioned when Beatrice confronts him about the fact that they have not slepttogether for a long time. Later in the play Eddie warns Beatrice never to question his manhoodin this way.PowerThroughout the play there is a clear power struggle between the men. Eddie in thebeginning is the dominant malein the house; he is respected and appreciated by Beatrice andCatherine. When Marco and Rodolfo enter his territory, his home, he immediately feelsthreatened. Catherine has previously idolized him and yet now she has a new interest - anexciting and good-looking young man, Rodolfo.