Women in the Early 20th Century: Whores or Housewives?
Even though in today’s society women play a major role in just about every career available, such acknowledgement hasn’t always existed. When Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller was written women played a totally different role. During this time period men have always been favored and believed to be superior of woman; still existing in such a way in some third world countries and even in Latin communities. In this story Miller tends to portray women in two different categories: the whores and the housewives. In this play Miller portrays women as extremely disrespected and merely used as sex slaves.
The main female character, Linda Loman, is the typical wife of the early 20th century. She is there for her husband to offer her full support no matter what decision he makes. She is portrayed as being a patient, tactful, and considerate wife by showing her husband the lovely gesture of taking of his shoes to make him more comfortable. Willy even states that Linda is his “foundation and [his] support” (Pg #). Also Willy doesn’t seem to fully appreciate the wife he has. Whenever Willy complains about his arch supports killing him, Linda responds by telling him to “[take] an aspirin” and even goes as far as to ask him if she should get it for him, so it can soothe him ( Pg #).Yet Willy just ignores her suggestion and continues on with his story about him being fine while driving and observing the scenery. That conversation brings a dismissive attitude towards Linda. She does everything she can to fulfill her husband’s needs, yet she doesn’t receive the same treatment. Linda seems to be accepting of the role she plays in the Loman household. Miller portrays her as a very gullible woman who believes that her husband will provide everything she needs. That’s why when Biff finds out that his father has been having an affair with another woman he hides it from Linda, because he knows that such news would devastate...
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