The play “Death of a Salesman” written by Arthur Miller deals with the failure of the old salesman Willy Loman who, in his confusion, can’t differ from dream and reality and mingles the present and the past in his thoughts. The play presents the negative sides of the American Dream: the unsuccessfulness of a salesman who ends up poor, exhausted and suicidal.
Willy projects his hopes and dreams of being a well-known salesman onto Biff, his eldest son, who should become a successful salesman, though, Biff is turning is back on Willy because he caught Will cheating on his wife Linda when he was 10 years old. At first, Biff is torn between fulfilling Willy’s dreams or going in the West and fulfilling his. His younger brother Happy lives in the shadow of Biff and Willy’s conflict and seems to be ignored. He also isn’t a successful salesman but an assistant. He behaves immature and seeks for attention. While Willy, Linda and Happy betray themselves by not accepting the truth about their miserable situation, Biff is the only one who sees that he is a better farmer than a salesman even though this means less money.
60 year-old salesman, who is not successful reasons: exaggerated expectations of himself misses chances given by Ben and Charley can't face his different character: not as ruthless and reckless as he wishes to be self-delusion can't face failure living a lie moody dreams of success and money confused powerless cheated on his wife unfaithful over-estimates himself: has a too high opinion of himself only doubting with Linda cares for his family: after his suicide: family should be insured ignored negative sides of his role models everybody in his family more successful than he is
Biff Loman: faces reality self-awareness steals adored his dad till he found out that he cheated on his mom
→ realised Willy's lie doesn't want to become such a poor old personality who can't face the truth acknowledges his failure and confronts it sees himself trapped in Willy's grandiose fantasies youth: enthusiastic, confident, affection now: troubled, thief, frustrated, disappointed, sad, personal growth, flawed as everybody in the family honest, though unable to communicate with his dad
Father – son conflict: difficult relationship because
1. Willy’s big influence on Biff in his childhood
2. Loss of trust because of cheating on his wife Linda
Willy prjects his dreams on Biff and expects him to reach Willy’s former aims which he didn’t achieve doesn’t love Biff for hat he is but for what he wants him to be childhood: 1.teaches Biff that he is someone special
2. Biff tries to fulfil his father’s expactations adulthood: 1. Biff is put in opposition to Willy
2. Biff realises that he has a different understanding of being happy hard for Biff to make own decisions