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Freudian literary criticism uses the psychoanalytic theory of Sigmund Freud, an Austrian neurologist in the late 19th and early 20th century, to interpret a literary work in terms of the known psychological conflicts of its characters or, conversely, to construct the author’s psychic life from unconscious revelations in his work (Britannica). Miller used Freudian psychology in the play to characterize the interaction between Eddie’s conscious and unconscious mind. Reading between the lines of the texts of the play, we discover, relate and understand Eddie’s  struggles to identify his own unacknowledged and obsessive desire for Catherine, his wife’s niece. In turn, freudian criticism reveals to us Miller’ own secret desires and wishes and the connection and similarities between the author and this story of sexual guilt and betrayal. Miller and the main protagonist Eddie both share an inner torment and conflict caused because of their greed to fulfill sexual and pleasure-seeking motives which makes them break the rules of right and wrong in society. This inability of Eddie to face the truth about himself and live within the restrictions of society ultimately leads to his death. Through the character of Eddie, we discover Miller’s own “turmoil of incestuous desire and betrayal within it” (Bigsby 482), due to his extra-marital affair with Marilyn Monroe at the time of writing this play. Perhaps he saw in Eddie’s greed for Catherine a parallel to his own interest in Marilyn Monroe (Meyers 119).           Even though Eddie refuses to acknowledge or verbalize his incestuous love for his niece Catherine- in fact, he denies it – “That’s what you think of me – that I would have such a thought?” (Miller 84), his actions such as no longer sleeping with his wife and ordering Catherine not to wear high heels in the presence of the younger Rodolpho, all reveal the hopelessly flawed human man Eddie was. In turn, the psyche of the play reveals Miller’s incestuous impulses in his relationship with his daughter Jane (Gottfried 260). Also, as mentioned by Miller in his autobiography Timebends: A Life (1987), “I finally glimpsed something of myself in this play…I suddenly saw my father’s adoration of my sister and, through his emotions, my repressed own” (Gottfried 260).

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