Death Of A Salesman

Death of A Salesman
Death Of A Salesman Essay
Death of a Salesman is centered around one man trying to reach the American dream and taking his family along for the ride. The Loman’s lives from beginning to end is a troubling story based on trying to become successful, or at least happy. Throughout their lives they encounter many problems and the end result is a tragic death caused by stupidity and the need to succeed. During his life Willy Loman caused his wife great pain by living a life not realizing what he could and couldn’t do. Linda lived sad and pathetic days supporting Willy’s unreachable goals. Being brought up in this world caused his children to lose their identity and put their futures in jeopardy.
Willy lived everyday of his life trying to become successful, well-off salesman. His self-image that he portrayed to others was a lie and he was even able to deceive himself with it. He traveled around the country selling his merchandise and maybe when he was younger, he was able to sell a lot and everyone like him, but Willy was still stuck with this image in his head and it was the image he let everyone else know about. In truth, Willy was a senile salesman who was no longer able to work doing what he’s done for a lifetime. When he reaches the point where he can no longer handle working, he doesn’t realize it, he puts his life in danger as well a others just because he’s pig-headed and doesn’t understand that he has to give up on his dream. He complains about a lot of things that occur in everyday life, and usually he’s the cause of the problems. When he has to pay for the repair bills on the fridge, he bitches a lot and bad mouths Charley for buying the one he should of bought. The car having to be repaired is only because he crashes it because he doesn’t pay attention and/or is trying to commit suicide. Willy should have settled with what he had and made the best of things. He shouldn’t have tied to compete with everyone and just made the best decision for him using intelligence and practicality. Many of Willy’s problems were self-inflicted, the reason they were self-inflicted was because he wanted to live the American dream. If he had changed his standards or just have been content with his life, his life problems would have been limited in amount and proportion.


Willy’s problems in life were usually caused of his chase towards the American dream. Every problem he had and every upsetting or hostile moment he experienced was also inflicted upon Linda, his wife. The hell she went through everyday was because she was his wife. Linda took each day one at a time and each day was filled with stressful worrying about Willy. Imagine how she felt when she found out about Willy’s suicidal tendencies, she must have tried extremely hard, as not to take it personally. Linda tried as best she …..could to try and help Willy, but it wasn’t her fault she was not able to get through to him. Willy did not respect Linda or give her the treatment and recognition she deserved. She spent the days mending her silk stockings getting gray hair and worrying about her husbands welfare. Meanwhile Willy found companionship with numerous mistresses and gave away Linda’s well-deserved stockings. Linda agrees with everything Willy says and stays content throughout the whole play. The one time she explodes is when the boys came home from the restaurant after leaving Willy alone. She shows emotion and with a little anger and hostility her true feelings.
Biff and Happy’s futures when they were small all depended on the way they were brought up. Willy was the only one with any say in the way the kids were brought up. Linda went along with whatever Willy said. Willy taught them that if they were handsome and successful, opportunity will come to you. Happy learned nothing from Willy’s demise but insists that his father had “the only dream you can have- to come out number-one man”. Biff and Happy idolized their father when they were young. The stories they were told made them picture their father as a popular, successful, well-known salesman. As Biff grew up, he found himself being told things about his father like “A salesman has to dream, it comes with the territory.” At the end of the story when Linda says they we free, Biff is free to realize his dream of owning a ranch out West where he can live close to the natural world. Biff also realizes that his father had the wrong dreams and didn’t know who he was. Biff is sure he won’t make the same mistakes his father did. Meanwhile, Happy is more like his dad, determined to stay in town and prove himself to everyone. Having Biff acknowledge the dishonesty of his own life, insists on the end of their phony dream.

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Although the Loman’s lives were full of many problems, the problems were not a ll caused by Willy striving for the American dream. Willy’s problems, (that usually affected the whole family) were caused by little decisions made throughout his lives. He had a choice of whether or not to do something, he just made the wrong decision most of the time because he wanted to live the American dream. The majority of problems Willy encountered were decide upon with the idea of the American dream in mind, although the end result of the problems were not purposely meant to turn out as bad as they usually did. Willy Loman put his family through endless torture because of his search for a successful life. He should have settled with what he had and been happy. One dream is not worth all the pain and problems his caused, he should have learned to be content and, as harsh as it may be to believe, he should have realized what he could have accomplished and given up on his dream.

Death Of A Salesman

Arthur Miller is one of the most renowned and important American playwrights to ever live. His works include, among others, The Crucible and A View from the Bridge. The plays he has written have been criticized for many things, but have been praised for much more, including his magical development of the characters and how his plays provide good theater. In his plays, Miller rarely says anything about his home life, but there are at least some autobiographical hints in his plays. Arthur Miller is most noted for his continuing efforts to devise suitable new ways to express new and different themes. His play Death of a Salesman, a modern tragedy, follows along these lines. The themes in this play are described and unfurled mostly through Willy Lomans, the main character in the play, thoughts and experiences. The story takes place mainly in Brooklyn, New York, and it also has some flashback scenes occurring in a hotel room in Boston. Willy lives with his wife Linda and their two sons, Biff and Happy in a small house, crowded and boxed in by large apartment buildings. The three most important parts of Death of a Salesman are the characters and how they develop throughout the play; the conflicts, with the most important ones revolving around Willy; and the masterful use of symbolism and other literary techniques which lead into the themes that Miller is trying to reveal.
Arthur Miller was born in Manhattan on October 17, 1915 to Isidore and Augusta Barnett Miller. His father was a ladies coat manufacturer. Arthur Miller went to grammar school in Harlem but then moved to Brooklyn because of his fathers losses in the depression. In Brooklyn he went to James Madison and Abraham Lincoln High Schools and was an average student there, but did not get accepted to college. After high school, he worked for 2 years at an auto supply warehouse where he saved $13 of his $15 a week paycheck. He began to read such classics as Dostoevski and his growing knowledge led him to the University of Michigan.

While at the University of Michigan, Miller worked many jobs such as a mouse tender at the University laboratory and as a night editor at the newspaper Michigan Daily. He began to write plays at college and won 2 of the $500 Hopwood Playwriting Awards. One of the two awarded plays No Villain (1936) won the Theaters Guild Award for 1938 and the prize of $1250 encouraged him to become engaged with Mary Grace Slattery, whom he married in 1940. Miller briefly worked with the Federal Theater Project and in 1944 he traveled to Army Camps across Europe to gather material for a play he was doing. His first Broadway play, The Man Who Had All the Luck, opened in 1944. Since then he has written 13 award winning plays and more than 23 different noted books. He had two children with Mary Grace Slattery, Jane and Robert, but divorced her and in 1956 married Marilyn Monroe. He then divorced her later that decade, and, in 1962, married Ingeborg Morath and had one child with her, named Rebecca. He now lives on 400 acres of land in Connecticut and spends his time gardening, mowing, planting evergreens, and working as a carpenter. He still writes each day for four to six hours.

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His father always told him to read. He once said, Until the age of seventeen, I can safely say that I never read a book weightier than Tom Swift and the Rover Boys, but my father brought me into literature with Dickens(Nelson, Pg. 59). His fathers good-natured joking was used to invent the character of Joe Kellers genial side. After the Fall (1947) is a play written by Miller where he sneaks in some small autobiographical notes. The character traits exhibited by the main woman in the play indicate his mothers early encouragement to his literary promise.
The Depression still troubles him today, especially for the hard times that he went through as a child. In an interview, he once said,
It seems easy to tell how it was to live in those years, but I have made several attempts to tell

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