Death of a Salesman


Discussion Topics

1. Do you feel that Willy is suffering from a genuine mental illness or that his escapes to the past are an intentional coping mechanism?

2. Why does Willy feel that it is important to be well-liked?

3. Why do you think Biff steals? At times, Biff suggests that his stealing is a compulsion that he does not understand. Do you believe this?

4. Much of the play focuses on Biff and Willy’s relationship with Biff. How has this emphasis on Biff helped shape who Happy is?

5. Do you think Linda knew about the affair?

6. At what point in the play do you feel like Willy’s suicide became inevitable—or do you feel that one of the other characters could have done something to prevent the suicide?

7. Is Happy’s out-of-control sexual behavior based in his sexuality or based on something else? If it is something else, then what do you think motivates Happy?

8. What do you think Linda means when she talks about being free at the end of the play?

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