Arthur Miller's Play, Death of a Salesman Essay

Pages: 3 (870 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 2  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Literature

Arthur Miller's play, Death of a Salesman, explores the theme of the American Dream not because of how it can be achieved but how it can fail. Willy Loman suffers from an idealistic view of the world in relation to his dream. He is deluded by thinking if he wants something, he will get it. He fails to see the difference between his dream and his talents, he is blind to specific facts, and he passes this characteristic to his son. Willy is an interesting character study because we can learn from his mistakes, not his example. Willy squanders his life and his dream.

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Willy cannot be faulted for not having a dream but he can be held responsible for what he does to accomplish that dream. His dream is fine enough but he is misguided almost his entire life by his dream and his talent. They are not one in the same. Willy is not a successful man and, at his age, he is forced to come to terms with why that may be. It is difficult for him to comprehend being a bad salesman considering that is all he wants to do and all he has done. However, the fact is that he is not a successful salesman; he is average. He lies to himself and others about his success to remain a salesman. He has excuses for his lack of success. He explains to Linda, "The trouble was that three of the stores were half-closed for inventory in Boston. Otherwise, I woulda broke records" (Miller 1046). He knows that people "don't seem to take to me" (1047) but he never thinks to ask himself why. In the same vein, he does not understand why people laugh at him. Willy is just another cog in the wheel, so to speak. He realizes his "pass me by. I'm not noticed" (1047) but he does not take that to the next logical conclusion that he is not noticed because he is nothing extraordinary. Willy experiences moments of insight but he cannot face the truth about what they mean to his life. He would rather not have to think about what being mediocre means at this point in his life. Willy makes excuses and he is also blind to certain facts.

TOPIC: Essay on Arthur Miller's Play, Death of a Salesman, Assignment

Willy is almost blissfully ignorant but deep down he senses the truth. He knows he is not as successful as the men he works with are and he knows why, to a certain extent. However, Willy's blindness prevents him from moving forward. He cannot see how his dream has not come true and how it… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Arthur Miller's Play, Death of a Salesman" Essay in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Arthur Miller's Play, Death of a Salesman.  (2009, December 21).  Retrieved November 30, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Arthur Miller's Play, Death of a Salesman."  21 December 2009.  Web.  30 November 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Arthur Miller's Play, Death of a Salesman."  December 21, 2009.  Accessed November 30, 2021.