Willy Loman's Suffering In Death Of A Salesman

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Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller portrays the last 24 hours of the life of a common man, Willy Loman, as he reflects on the failures of his life. Loman’s success as a salesman has passed now that his old loyal boss, Howard, has died, and he now works as an unsuccessful traveling salesman, scraping by on commision from Howard’s son. Loman goes to the neighbor, Charley, often borrowing money for household payments, but refuses to take a job-offer from him. Willy Loman’s spouse is Linda and they have two boys, Happy and his older brother Biff, who are now middle aged men who live back at home and are trying to find where they belong in life. Bernard is a childhood friend of the Loman boys, and is Charley’s son. Willy Loman’s deep suffering …show more content…

One example is the high level of expectations Biff’s father has for him. Willy gloats about Biff being a star, “Look at this boy[Biff]. . .three universities are begging for him”(86;2). Biff’s ego boosts through the roof, which only sets him up for suffering more when he fails. Another way in which Willy causes suffering for Biff is through the affair he has with a women on business trips. Biff finds out on his own by walking in on his dad and the women, who is wearing his mom’s stockings. This traumatizes Biff. He ends up not retaking a failed high school math class, “not graduating”(110;2), as Bernard warned, which wipes out his scholarships to college. Lastly, Willy Loman creates suffering for Biff by teaching him bad morals. Willy encourages Biff to steal, cheat, and lie. For example, Willy says to Biff and Happy, “Boys! Go right over to where they’re building the apartment house and get some sand. We’re going to rebuild the entire front stoop right now!”(50;1). Mr. Loman wants to build his front porch by stealing the material. Biff suffers from this later in life when he goes to jail for stealing a suit. Willy also encourages Bernard to help Biff cheat, “You’ll give him the answers!”(40;1). Willy teaches Biff bad morals that will consequently make Biff suffer.
All of Willy Loman’s family suffers because of him. This is an example of how one person affects the whole family. Willy Loman believes success in life is having nice things, having money, and being known by people. Unfortunately, Mr. Loman never realises that success is much more than having material things. Hopefully Biff and Happy learn from their dad’s mistakes, and reach the real American

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