Death of a Salesman: Portrayal of Willy Loman's Mind

Pages: 2 (836 words) Published: June 22, 2013
The essence of the play Death of a Salesman is the portrayal of the mind of Willy Loman, broken in a desperate search for his own identity and his status as a human being. His mental confusion is such that he moves uncontrollably from present reality to dreams of the past and back again, his grasp on normality becoming less and less reliable. Arthur Miller has contrived this brilliantly, at first allowing Willy to describe how his memory has been betraying him as he drove along , lapsing into dreams so that he goes of the road: “I’m tellin’ ya, I absolutely forgot I was driving” (Miller 9). Later his ability to distinguish dream and reality will be still less certain. He simultaneously lives in his memory and reality. Sometimes this memory captures his mind so completely that he forgets whether he lives in reality or in his memory. Certain incidents in the play justify this psychological situation. It is evident in this play as well that Willy’s memory constructs his present on several occasions. In this play the most important thing is the memory of Willy Loman as all his actions in some way or the other are generated from his memory. Human psychology suggests that a person goes back to his/her memory in response to a certain incident happening in front of him/her which s/he resents. Apparently human being seeks shelter in the past ‘happy memories’ from drudgery of the present sufferings. For Willy Loman inevitably this is what happens. At the end of his life Willy finds himself as a defeated man whose dreams seem impossible to be fulfilled. At the same time, the dreams that he saw with his sons becoming established in the society were also crushed. So time to again he goes back to his ‘good time memories’ perhaps to escape the reality or to find inspiration to live. Evidently, to the reader Willy appears to be a person with traumatized dream desperately trying to find a means to sustain one more day on earth. Willy’s tragedy is partly caused psychological...
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Death of a Salesman: Willy Loman's Failure as a Father Essay
  • Death of a Salesman Willy Loman's Mental Breakdwon Essay
  • Death of a Salesman (Willy Loman Essay
  • Death of a Salesman
  • Essay on Death of a Salesman
  • Sympathy for Willy Loman
  • Death of a Salesman: Willy Loman Essay
  • Essay on Death of a Salesman: Willy Loman

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free