How does Miller show his ability to build up tension in this extract?
(page 50 "How about some grape juice" - page 52 "the court did not know him Annie!)
Throughout the play "all my sons" Miller thoroughly expresses his ability to change and strengthen our emotions and develop tension between characters. I found this effect of tension particularly evident in this extract, a discussion between George, Chris and Annie.
Due to past history, we already know that feelings between Chris and
George are going to be "on edge". It appears that tension is already apparent in the first few lines although the overall atmosphere appears fairly mellow and laid back:
"How about some grape juice? Mother made it especially for you" -Chris …show more content…
"(Breaking in, putting a restraining hand on Chris) When did you start wearing a hat?"
"George will you sit down and stop---?"
However her efforts are overruled by the intolerance between the two, which has clearly been building up for a long time. In a way her motives can be compared with Kate's - she doesn't want anyone to know what she knows, as she realises this will break up the family.
At the beginning of the meeting it appears that both George and Chris try to hide their true feelings in respect of Annies. Yet, in this part of the episode, true opinions come to light:
"You're not going to marry him because his family destroyed your family" - George
"What kind of a statement is that to make? You're a big boy now." -
It almost appears as though Chris looks down on George as it is his father who is in jail, when in reality it should be the other way round. The short sentences on pages 50 and 51 develop into prolonged speeches by George on page 52. Perhaps this is because he becoming