Death of a Salesman Essay

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Death of a Salesman and The Death of The American Dream The play Death of a Salesman is an ode to the American Dream or the dream according to Willy Loman. But what is that dream and is he living that dream? As we read the story we might realize that Willy has reached the American Dream but he just doesn’t see it that way. But what role do his kids play on his dream? And, what can we make of the fact that we never learn what he actually sells. Also, does the outcome make him the hero or the villain of the story? The first thing we need to think about is what Willy’s interpretation of the American Dream is. According to Harold Clurman Willy had two ideas of the American Dream, the historical dream that we all think and know about and the business dream that he was so infatuated with (Miller and Weales 135-156). In Willy’s head the dream was easily achievable if a person was well liked and had an outgoing personality. What Willy was unable to realize was that he was already living an American Dream. He was a home and car owner and had a stable job that could provide for his family. He had managed to raised two boys who had promising future, it was as good as it can get for most of us. But the business end of the dream blinded him. His mistaken view of the American Dream drove him to accept his faith and he attempted to become the best and most liked salesman. Although Willy never really becomes a successful salesman he keeps thinking that his big break will come and that their life will turn around. But where does this idea come from and why is Willy so magnetically attracted to such idea? When Willy’s brother, Ben, set out to look for their father he met a salesman named Dave. This salesman seems to have it all going on, according to Willy he “is eighty four years old salesman who had drummed merchandise in thirty-one states and who could now

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