Death of a Salesman - Essay Example

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Death of a Salesman is Arthur Miller’s most famous work that addresses the agonizing conflicts within a family that are caused by some larger issues of the national values of America…
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Download file to see previous pages After this paper, we will understand the goal of Miller to depict his charges to the country to be true and blatant. Background Death of a Salesman is a powerful drama that prosecutes the fundamental American values, in relation to the American Dream of material success. It may seem a little tame today due to constant individual self-analysis and critiques but it was relatively radical in its setting. America faced irreconcilable and insightful domestic tensions after the World War II. Although the war had apparently created an extraordinary sense of prosperity and security the American people, they became progressively caught in an apprehensive cold war with the Soviets. The spread of myths about a peaceful, regular and repulsively elated American life was strengthened by America’s relentless anxiety of the concept of Communism. America in general was not able afford social conformity and that the philosophical and cultural custom – booming and Last Name 3 prosperous living – championed. A Tragic Hero Major part of the play is told from the viewpoint of Willy, the protagonist in the story. The background of the protagonist life is shown in the analepsis – showing scenes in the present time with some characters on the stage and conversations only Willy knows about. His habit of talking to himself, pretending to have a conversation with his older son, Biff, concerns his younger son, Happy. In the opening of Act I, it is shown that Willy contradicts has a tendency of contradicting himself. He states that his son, Biff, is unsteady and very lazy but afterwards declares that Biff is anything but lazy. In these scenes, it gives the viewers a hint that Willy is his own paradox, which could have been caused by his aspirations in life and to his sons, particularly Biff. He is torn between achieving the American Dream of material success and his love for his sons, which is further explained in the story in the succeeding Acts. In so many ways, Willy has tried with his utmost might to achieve the American Dream. He acquires a home and a range of then-luxurious appliances. He raises his family and sails forth to into the business world with ambitions in exuberance. However, he has failed to achieve the fruits of the American Dream and passes the dream to his sons. Apparently, only Happy is the one fulfilling the so-called “Dream”. Biff tries so hard to buy the concept his father sells but it seems that he can only try so hard. He hops from one job to another, making him not able to steadily keep a 9-5 job. As a result, he ends up toiling lands and ranches, working with his bare hands to make a living, which for his father, is too far from what he has grasped from America’s sales pitch of the “American Dream.” In the play, this is beautifully portrayed through its structure – stream of consciousness. Willy Last Name 4 moves from one place to another in his house, with flashbacks of his past, and fantasizes conversations with different characters in the story. If the scene is in the present, the characters enter the room through the door in the left, abiding by the rules of the set. However, when the scene is about Willy’s visit of his past or his dreams, all of these rules don’t exist. Characters pass through the walls, making a dreamy atmosphere on the stage. This shows that the mental state of Willy deteriorates and his past and present moves in parallel to each ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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