Death of a Salesman

Topics: Death of a Salesman, Life, James Truslow Adams Pages: 22 (8993 words) Published: May 2, 2012
Death of a Salesman
The declaration of independence declared that every American is born with rights; inalienable rights and freedom that would see home or her achieve the American dream. Arthur Miller’s "Death of a Salesman" is a story of a protagonist, Willy Loman, who is striving to achieve the dream, though he realizes his rights extremely late in his life struggles. According to the American dream fundamental, one needed to be industrious and be liked in order to success. Therefore, anybody with ambition, honest and hardworking was bound to succeed. In this story, some characters achieve success, become wealthy, and finally seize power over others. Willy strongly believed in American dream and knew he had the opportunity to successes. The only problem was that his hard work was not enough to earn him the success and everything he ever wanted in life. Thesis

Willy Loman is a personification of the struggle the poor and minority struggle through in their effort to achieve the American dream. The society prejudices the poor man’s effort to succeed causing Loman to be alienated from the society (Miller “Death of a Salesman: Certain Private Conversations” 2). This paper examines Arthur Miller’s play with regard to its reflection of the American values, and that entails success in modern America. The American Dream

Willy Loman is enthusiastically dedicated to pursuing the American dream, which requires that a person be "well liked", hardworking and attractive to successes in business. When he achieves that, he would be able to attain and accumulate all the material wealth he needs to survive in the modern American life (Parker 26). Contrary to his mindset, with the superficial characteristics of being liked and being attractive, there needs to be a deeper understanding if the American dream concept is to succeed. He is phony in his interpretation of the American dream; therefore, he fails to change with times hence causing him to suffer psychological deterioration, as he is unable to accept disparity in his real life and the dream he had (Annas and Rosen 56). Willy Loman, the protagonist, defines morality based on his capabilities to offer financial support to his family. Loman is desperate and according to him, success is earning more, retaining his job and accumulating wealth (Sterling 48). With these themes, it is evident that Miller’s play, Death of a Salesman is an obvious contemporary masterwork. The society, which is the modern American lifestyle, has a substantial impact on the development of the play. The play develops through history and helps the audience to understand the changing society (Annas and Rosen 56). Success, in a Marxist viewpoint, is more than some few aspects that Willy believed in throughout his life. It comprises a number of life aspects. One crucial perspective is the inclination of personality, and the other is profit making. Willy is an individualist who is seeking to set himself as famous and fortunate. To begin with, Willy’s father and his elder brother, Ben, having grown up in the industrializing and capitalist society, developed unquenchable greed for wealth (Ward and Miller 78). According to them, happiness was attained because of financial success. Willy expresses this perception when he says, “…you have to be liked and you will lack nothing” (Miller “Death of a Salesman: Certain Private Conversations” 7). This superficial thinking that, success comes just by being friendly and smiling to people makes Willy irritated when he realizes that his hard work, at his sales job, is not appreciated. In fact, he is fired, after his salary was stopped and long taken (Ward and Miller 79). Capitalist philosophy in the modern America is that for one to succeed, he/she should be aggressive and fight for the rights as stipulated in the constitution. That is the reason why Willy’s boss treats business as business and not some form of friendship. Willy complains his salary was withdrawn...
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