How does Miller use language to make this a moving scene?
Throughout the extract, Miller uses complex literary devices and carefully chosen words in order to make Willy seem desperate, in denial, wanting to be independent while not being able to and having a fear of failure.
Miller’s use of language portrays Willy to be desperate for the job which is moving.
Willy tells Howard that he’s ‘got to’ have his job, which sounds like Willy is trying to seem innocent – as if he cannot survive without it. It also sounds like he is demanding Howard to give him his job, which is not very professional and shows how Willy does not suit the business world. This is moving. As well as this, Willy, after having been denied a job which allows him to go to Boston responds by saying ‘Why can’t I go?’ Miller’s choice of words relates to those of a child who really wants to go somewhere, and is sulking. This reflects his desperateness to be able to go to Boston, and the relation to ...view middle of the document...
As well as this, the fact that Miller chooses to make Willy say ‘cripple’ over other words may suggest that Willy has realised that he is unable to provide for his family anymore, and that he is essentially ‘a cripple’ in his own eyes, he just doesn’t want to accept it. However, Millers choice of word may also suggest a lack of Willy’s education, due to the fact that this word is colloquial, which indicates that he was always not going to be able to provide properly for his family due to lack of good work. This adds to the never-ending tragedy of Willy as he was always destined to be a failure.
Miller’s portrayal of Willy’s denial that he hasn’t lost his job creates an impressionable scene. Willy trails off in his sentence ‘but in the meantime…’ Millers use of ellipsis means the actor playing Willy will try to convey a sense of confusion and trail off. His confusion creates a sympathetic atmosphere for the audience. Willy thinks he always had a job. He then says without shame ‘All right, I’ll go to Boston tomorrow.’ Miller having Willy agreeing with a non-existent comment shows Willy is confused and thinks that he failed; this sad feeling makes it very moving for the audience. Willy doesn’t want to lose his job completely.
Miller uses Willy’s fear of failure and desperation to lead. Wily is said to ‘leap away in fright’ as the recorder begins to play. The recorder represents the modern and the new, and Willy is shown to be afraid of this. This implies that Willy is afraid of the new and young people coming and taking his job and he can see the inevitability of him being replaced. Willy ‘grasps Howards arm’ which is a very desperate act, showing his rising fear for the future, and making the moment seem tragic. This adds to the moving aspect of this scene.
The story of Willy is one of great tragedy and failure, emphasised in this extract by some of the aspects illustrated above, it seems that Willy’s apparent desperate nature is the most moving of all the aspects of this scene because it is the first time the audience has seen that part of Willy. This scene reveals a lot about Willy but most of the things revealed were already known before.