Willy Loman Tragic Hero

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Daniel Eaton ENG 102 5/6/13 Tragic Hero Willy Loman in the play “Death of a salesman” is what is known as a tragic hero. He is considered a tragic hero because we find out that Willy was flying high and succeeding in his career, although not as much as he exaggerates throughout the play, but Willy was at a highpoint. He had his own house, a car, a job that he did very well. A wife and family he loved very much, not to mention he had the most amazing prize, his son Biff. Biff was in line to receive a college football scholarship. In Willy’s eyes he had it all, his life couldn’t get better. Willy then suffers a flaw; he is getting old and can no longer do what he was able to do at the age of twenty-five. He can’t go travelling to New England every other day to make a sale. He’s too old and ultimately he is losing his mind. Willy’s constant flashbacks and hallucinations begin to get the better of him. But he refuses to admit what is beginning to happen. Willy’s wife goes to her sons because of their fathers’ behavior. She tells them of the noose found in the basement, and also of how Willy has been getting into car ‘accidents.’ She begins to cry and tell Biff and Happy that Willy may not have been the most perfect father or husband or businessman, but he was a good guy and that “attention must be paid.” Clearly his whole family is affected by Willy’s recent behavior and willy can start to recognize this. So he plans to go to work the next morning to ask his boss if he could be reassigned to New York so he doesn’t have to travel so much. This is when Willy suffers a loss of stature. It turned out that his boss had been meaning to talk to him about something, about firing him. This hits Willy especially hard because he was very good friends with his old boss who died and left the company to his son. Who Willy claims to have named “Your father came to me the

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