To Willy, success is heavily represented by his brother Ben, who “walked into the jungle” at the age of seventeen and “walked out” at the age of twenty one (52). With this unconventional sense of prosperity, Willy seems to develop the idea that it is possible to achieve
Willy Loman was a troubled man who didn't have respect for his wife and degraded his children every chance he got when it came to their failures, especially with his son Biff. He only cared about achieving the American dream which he did not succeed because of all his problems that stood in his way. His constant obsession with achieving the American dream only made his family distance themselves from him more only due to the fact that he believed that achieving this would lead him to happiness and success. This also leads to the other major theme which is resilience. Willy came from a poor socioeconomic background and he is making all the efforts to pull himself out of his current situation through whatever he can do in hopes for something better that will make him feel like he's achieved his
To Willy the “American Dream” is not hard work, dedication and innovation its being successful and well liked. If Willy wasn’t successful there was no going out and changing the way he approached things, its success or fail for him. Willy wants the success the easy way, where he doesn’t do anything he doesn’t try hard to dedicate himself to get better, he wants it handed to him. Willy’s sons Happy and Biff don’t have the same drive to be a salesman like Willy does. That’s one reason Willy’s life starts to go in a spiral, his sons do not want anything to do with being a salesman.
Willy always found his dreams in someone else which is why his happiness never came. At first it was his father then it was his brother Ben, and then it was famous sales man Dave Singleman. He looked for others inside of himself which led to him not being satisfied. Dreams can not be rented or borrowed. Willy never realized this and in turn it caused his mental health to deteriorate even more than it already had.
Charley asks Willy about a job and if he is interested, but Willy’s pride in believing he is a successful businessman doesn't
Even when his neighbour Charley offers him a job with a salary, Willy declines because he is too proud to work for Charley. He rather blames his failure on the superficiality of the business world and fixates himself on the idea that personality, not hard work, is the key to accomplishment. Perhaps, this is because Willy is living in a world where the pursuit of the American Dream is a predominant part of people’s lives, and the materialistic pressures of the superficial were beginning to permeate its actual values. Under this particular pressure, Willy has been fighting his entire life to achieve "the dream," but unfortunately, no one ever explains to him what its true values are or how to really make it. Therefore, Willy manages his life based on his overwhelming sense of pride and ambition, and in this way, Miller seems to criticize the idea of compromising happiness for success-- even though Willy truly believes that happiness is achieved through success.
Willy Loman was a loving husband, good friend and most importantly, an amazing father. Regret fills my heart to the brim, the only thought that keeps running through my mind is what if I would’ve been there for my father. I wish the last words I spoke to my father were different and the last things I did to change my father were different. Willy’s decision to take his own life is both incomprehensible and confusing. Perhaps Willy’s priorities seemed to have shifted out of place as the years went on.
Miller depicts Willy as a tragic character in his willingness to preserve his dignity. Additionally, Willy’s dignity is tainted in the story because of his flawed philosophy of the American Dream. This along with unjust comparisons leads to Willy’s death. Based on how Willy Loman evaluates himself unjustly, he is a tragic hero because he must do anything to preserve his dignity, and his false impression of the American Dream, which leads to his downfall.
Charley’s humility leads to his success, and the contrast of these two characters highlights Willy’s arrogance and impracticality. Charley is humble, realistic, and knowledgeable. His self-confidence allows him to live a happy life without needing to boast. In contrast, Willy constantly brags about his life to boost his self-image. Furthermore, he criticizes others to feel better about himself which comes as a result of his jealousy and insecurity.
Willy Loman still manages to continue as a working, traveling salesman, almost as if he is hanging onto his profession by a string. Perhaps without his title, he is nothing. Willy Loman lives in his New York apartment house with his wife, Linda. Linda more than loves Willy, she perceives him as somewhat of a dream or a gorgeous landscape garden, still under construction. Despite the overall
Willy wanted the 'Death of a Salesman' like Singleman - "and by the way he died the death of a salesman" [Willy concerning Singleman: Act 2]-. And he struggled to achieve that dream, only to tragically kill himself. Which reaffirms Miller point that a tragic hero is a character " who is ready to lay down his life... to secure one thing".
However, pursuing this goal came with a price. Since he was highly motivated to becoming a successful salesman, he rarely stayed at home. Instead, he spent most of his time travelling around the country to conduct sales. He became a workaholic, forcing himself to make sacrifices in his family life in order to seek his own ambitions. Therefore, Willy’s perfectionistic ideals led to his demise.
About the cause of Willy 's death, critic like Bert Cardullo, in his article subtitled The Swollen Legacy of Arthur Miller, argues that: … The salesman figure that comes through is not of a typical grunt brought down by financial failure but of an exceptional invalid, in whom the stress of business only increased existing psychological imbalances ( ' 'Death of a Salesman
Tragedy can spread. In Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman is the protagonist, however he not the only person in the play who’s story ends tragically. His view on life spreads to those close to him. Primarily, Willy teaches it to his children who look up to him while his wife simply attaches herself to him, rooting for him in blind support while really she should be waking him up to the cold and dark reality that is their life. Throughout the play, the Loman family evolves differently.