Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman: Uncle Ben's Role in Willy's Life

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The presence of Uncle Ben triggers Willy Loman’s emotion, arousing regrets he wants to conquer over. Willy Loman develops and hardens his final decision with the help of Uncle Ben, a fatherly figure that never taught him very well.

Willy Loman’s lack of parental figure and mental health led to his deep belief in an alternate role. It is doubtful that Willy Loman would be deeply affected by Uncle Ben if he possessed either one of the factors: Healthy mentality and decent parental figure. Uncle Ben helped Willy Loman relive his past, discussing about their dead mother and the possible wealth Willy Loman could have attained. Willy Loman’s imaginative discussion with his uncle led to corruption in mind, disabling him to realize his true self as Charley have said, “You’re a salesman, and you don’t know that.” Uncle Ben was a false symbol of success that rooted faulty hope deeply in his brother’s mind, who eventually rose an expectation that only led to a destruction in his family and those around him.

A transition takes place from actuality to falsity as Willy Loman replays Uncle Ben’s quote in his “daydreams.” In the beginning, daydream stays as a daydream where Willy Loman simply replies to his uncle. It may have confused those around him, but it never came to harm anyone. However, Willy Loman starts to use his uncle’s quotes to answer his own questions. The quotes are not used as Uncle Ben have intended, but in a way to self-torture himself. “The jungle is dark but full of diamonds, Willy,” his uncle says. Willy Loman portrays this as death, the only best way, a “best thing” for his family. Death brought onto him was triggered by his daydream and his unwillingness to let go of his past. His uncle was one of the main characters that visited him often in his daydream, which led to a distortion in his view. Willy Loman was unable to view people and things around him clearly and that brought him a death in society. He was unable to handle his death in...
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