everyone seems to lie; good characters as well as evil ones engage in deceit as they attempt to conceal their feelings: beatrice and benedick mask their feelings for one another with bitter insults; don john spies on claudio and hero; don pedro and his 'crew' deceive benedick and beatrice. who hides and what is hidden? how does deceit function in the world of the play, and how does it help the play comment on life in
"Death of A Salesman" Several characters influence Willy greatly and magnifiy certain aspects of his character. Biff, Happy, and Ben are three characters that greatly influence and affect Willy's personality. These characters represent well vulnerability, a lack of self-worth, and regret to Willy. The main representation of vulnerability for Willy is Biff. Biff brings out Willy's vulnerability by forcing him to recall harsh memories of his affair.
Blind, Greedy, and Corrupt In the novels “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald and “The Tragedy of Macbeth” by William Shakespeare, the main characters of the stories are blinded by their own goals and ambitions. Both the Macbeth and Gatsby have goals that cause them to become unaware of what the consequences of their actions may be. This unawareness is what eventually leads to both characters downfall. In the case of both characters, once they get a sense that their goals are near, they become more driven and eager to fully achieve their goals. This hunger causes them to make mistakes along their way which get in the way of their dreams becoming a reality.
For Willy, it is apparent that reality and truth are too harsh for him and he would rather deal with lies instead. He conjures up ideas of what he wishes were real because to him being successful is the most important thing and what he needs people to believe. One of the main examples of this is when Willy says to his sons “they know me down in New England..” (page 19). Although he is clearly an unsuccessful salesman, he holds himself accountable to be extremely well-known and well-liked. Willy also encourages Biff to be unaccountable by telling him “coach’ll probably congratulate you on your initiative” when Biff steals the football.
Comparably each fictional character struggles to maintain their sanity, often reacting in rash and condescending behaviour. One factor making Willy and Johnny both tragic figures are their issues with reality vs. fantasy, in the opening act Miller describes the surroundings as “a solid vault of apartment houses around a small fragile-seeming home… A dream rising out of reality” suggesting the characters state of mind. Willy’s fantasy is that he is living the American dream or at lease close to it, however the reality is that he is having a breakdown and not as famously known as he portrays. Miller expresses this right from the start, allowing the character of Willy Loman to contradict himself and react irrationally towards the people closest to him. According to Aristotle’s hypothesis of a tragic hero the character must be of some form of nobility, suffer from some form of error in judgment, go through a period of reversed fortune, and finally recognize that the error was actually caused by his own actions.
Both Walter and Willy lie to others in order to achieve their ideal American dream. On their quest to attain this dream, they realize that it is only just a dream, and that is an idea that can never be fully reached. Both Willy and Walter’s journeys’ to fulfill their dreams are alike due to similar plot, setting, conflict, and symbols. The main characters in both plays are in a constant struggle with themselves to survive and live off of the little that they have; this makes their plots similar and also relates their story lines to the theme of the American Dream. In Death of a Salesman, Willy is an older man in his 60’s and is “an American everyman, in an America where what is produced becomes ever less tangible, ever more removed from reality” (Cardullo 29).
The criticism of the American Dream provided in both works leaves one wondering what sense there is in pursuing the Dream when the journey in achieving it is sure to be be difficult and, more likely than not, result in failure. In both works, many of the characters’s desires to achieve their dream can be so dominant that they find themselves going to great lengths in order to come closer to achieving it, often destroying their moral values while doing so. In Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman’s encouragement towards his sons to steal, cheat, and lie, is a testament to the measures to which he goes to in the pursuit of his dream. Stolen objects, such as basketballs, a football and a pen, reoccur throughout the play. After Biff “borrows” a ball from school, Willy excuses, and more or less encourages this behaviour, telling Biff that “Coach’ll probably congratulate [him] on [his] initiative!” (Miller, 30) Additionally, he lies to his wife regarding his job, feebly trying to preserve his dignity.
The Bitter Truth Many of the characters in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men dream of a better life. These dreams are supposed to help them deal with their difficult environments. Unfortunately, John Steinbeck’s world is a tough and inhospitable place where dreams do not come true. His story has dreamers and strugglers, with both external belief, where dreams seem to be plausible and a contradicting internal confinement, where dreams generally fade into vanity. Once dreams are abandoned, happiness is impossible to achieve, leaving a person trapped in a cycle of misery.
The arrogance and antipathetic aristocracy with ‘old money’ would never truly accept anyone who wasn’t born into wealth. Gatsby wasted his energy on a false promise of happiness and wealth, trying to win the heart of a woman who was materialistic, shallow and empty “his dream must have seemed so close”. Gatsby, believed in his future dream and love, he “believed in the green light, the orgastic future” but he became disillusioned “He did not know that it was already behind him.” In the end Gatsby died trying to grasp the American dream, pursuing happiness, wealth and love. Fitzgerald purposefully constructs Gatsby demonstrate the tragic outcome of someone who struggles to gain the dream with virtuous intent but becomes
In the novel, Gatsby’s ambition represent the American Dream. He believes that despite having a lack of education, he can succeed in life on the basis of his hard work and money. The source of his money is unclear though, as Tom Buchunan suggests that he runs an illegal underground business and Gatsby is a bootlegger. Gatsby spends his life blindly by dreaming of winning over the woman he always loved and always depended on his money to achieve his goal. This can be seen in a dialogue with Nick Carroway: “‘Can’t repeat the past?’ he cried incredulously.