Willy wanted his sons to be successful and live large. In America, money can get you many places in society. Biff follows his fathers ways and words, and by the time he takes his first job he has been raised to think that success and happiness will just come to him without excessive effort on his part. Willy however, is not the only member of the Loman family with problems. Unfortunately, Willy's vision of greatness has little substance, and part of what we witness in Death of a Salesman is the tragic outcome of that superficiality. Happy never realizes this, and at the end of the play he vows to continue in his father's footsteps, pursuing an American Dream that will leave him empty and alone. He thinks that his twenty thousand dollar insurance policy will be worth more to his family than his own life.
When Willy goes to speak with Howard about getting a job in New York, Willy would talk over Howard whenever he would say anything that Willy did not want to hear. I came back at ten miles an hour. Willy refuses to admit that his actions and his teachings have led to the destruction of his relationships with his sons. Although she takes his side until the very end, her empty support cannot keep Willy from finally recognizing his uselessness and killing himself to try to give something to his family. Biff Loman's Tragedy Willy is not the only character to suffer from the effects of tragedy.
To some, it is living in the lap of luxury in all aspects. Literature Guides Major Themes of Death of a Salesman Important Themes The American Dream Willy emphatically believes in the American myth of the rise of the individual in society. As a result of this, Biff loses all respect for his father, and alternatively Willy begins to loathe Biff as well. Willy is very inconsistent person because of the conflict inside him. The central conflict of the play is between Willy and his elder son Biff, who showed great promise as a young athlete and ladies' man, but in adulthood has become a thief and drifter with no clear direction.
At the conclusion of the play, it is totally clear that Willy was wrong about himself. The play is a montage of memories, dreams, confrontations, and arguments, all of which make up the last 24 hours of Willy Loman's life. But Willy's pride will not let him accept the help. Willy never takes the time to teach Biff a good work ethic, good values, and strong morals, because Willy himself has not even established these within his own character. She never understood Willy and his problems. Yet his reality is that he is finished in sales, and a failure at everything he tries.
In fact, Ben's appearance may create anxiety for the audience because it suggests an alternate, more disturbing, end to the play. The character Willy portrays a large piece of society. . To others, it is a chance at a better brighter opportunity for themselves or their families. Then again, the final clash between Biff and his father might be the climax of all the built up tension. What the hell did I say to him? While Biff was in Boston he witnesses his father and the woman walking inside Boston Hotel.
Biff, however, due to his father's anger does not quite feel the same way about his father, especially when his father commits suicide, so while the conflict is a victory for Willy, the feeling of accomplishment is not mutual as Biff does not feel the same way about their relationship. At the end, Happy determines to carry on Willy's family drive to succeed in sales, while Biff knows his path lies in a different sort of life. Illusion Versus Reality in Death of a Salesman A major theme and source of conflict throughout Miller's play, Death of a Salesman, is the Loman family's inability to distinguish between reality and illusion. Biff is home after working as a farm hand for many years in the West. Even though the action of the play can shift from one part of the house to another without delay, the action is still limited to the present.
For example, in Act I, Scene 3, Willy pours a glass of milk in the kitchen, sits down, and begins to mumble to himself. A post-depression era drama, Death of a Salesman challenges its audience to analyze universal components of the American Dream. Biff comes slowly toward her. As the play progresses, the action shifts to the front of the stage. Overall I believe Arthur… 2550 Words 11 Pages Blue Mountain. In other words, the audience becomes increasingly aware that the majority of the action is taking place inside Willy's head.
From my point of view, he is money hungry and because he is not living a life of making big bucks, he is pretty much living in a fantasy. The American Dream versus happiness through material wealth is the main conflict that sets the outline of the story. Most likely Biff will end up failing contrary to what his father wanted him to be — a successful man. Act I opens with a conversation between Willy and his wife, Linda. It is difficult enough to watch an individual lose his or her identity. A sob rises in her throat. The more fragmented and disastrous reality becomes, the more necessary it is for Willy to create an alternative reality, even if it requires him to live solely in the past.
Such movement without the benefit of time delays or dialogue transitions produces a disjointed and fragmented sequence of events, much like a dream. Not only is Willy Loman the chief character of the play but it is primarily from his psychological perspective that the play's dramatic action derives its meaning. The third major theme of the play, which is order versus disorder, results from Willy's retreats into the past. In his plays, we find challenge and convention, boldness and caution, daring technical experiment and poetic dialogues. The audience does not have to wait while a new set is erected or an old one torn down, but instead moves directly and instantaneously into the next scene.
Yet, this support actually backfires, doing more harm than good. Society In Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman deals with an evolving world around him. Biff is horrified to catch Willy in the act of adultery, and this moment shatters Biff's heroic vision of his father. Upon further inspection however, it becomes apparent that Miller's inclusion of background material allows actors and directors to study character motivation and internalize the information, thereby portraying it in the performance. The American Dream that anyone can achieve financial success and material comfort lies at the heart of Death of a Salesman.