Death of a Salesman
April 2, 2015
University of Phoenix Online
Death of a Salesman
Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller is one of my favorite plays growing up and one that defines history. Achieving the American dream is sought by so many people in society with little regard to what makes us truly happy. Willy Loman, the main character, works his whole life to provide financial security for his family and dreams about becoming rich only to be left with nothing at the end. The major driving theme behind the play is the American dream; which Miller points out is an allegory, the fallacy of working hard your whole lives chasing the American ...view middle of the document...
The allegory displayed by Biff is that you should choose what makes you happy and not what society or your family may think. Willy seems oblivious to his own short comings not only as a father and husband but in his own life. Willy cannot comprehend that there is more to life than material success and being “well liked”.
Death of a Salesman is a tale of tragedy but not what most people think. The tragedy exists in the background, tone, and how the play is told from Willy’s perspective. From the beginning we see a man trying hard to achieve the American dream only to be left with nothing by the end of the play. Willy does commit suicide but let me ask you, what brought upon the thought of suicide? Willy says, “Nothing’s planted. I don’t have a thing in the ground” (Salesman act 2). The depression of living your whole life with nothing to show, material or legacy, for your hard work is what I believe to be the true tragedy in the play. We as society forget what is truly important to live a successful life; it’s not the money, cars, or the career. To be truly happy is to be loved and accepted by our family and peers. Money creates order and order just attributes to our overall happiness and well-being but it’s not the defining factor in our happiness.
Arthur Miller examines the cost regarding the American dream. Miller uses the play to challenge the hypocrisy of capitalist materialism that was brought upon the postwar era. Miller used the...