The American Dream in Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman

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Material happiness provides the ambition behind seeking the "Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman ." In Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, Willy Loman's determination to live up to his "American Dream" and to seek material happiness only takes his life.

What is the ""? The "American Dream" cannot be defined. I know that my "American Dream" consists of a Porsche, a large house, and a happy family. Willy Loman's definition does not differ greatly from mine although while trying to pursue this dream, Willy's mind slowly drifted further and further away from reality. The "American Dream" is the idea that any man or woman can make his or her own fortune, despite his or her past. Willy is trying to achieve success through this thought, believing that being "well liked" and working hard will be enough to ensue his success. Willy was wrong.

"The reality of the American Dream is that people are capable of succeeding. Success requires one to work hard and be dedicated to both his/her professional life and family life. Yet, the illusion of the Dream is that attaining material prosperity defines success.">>If Willy is deluded, then maybe it's important to explain what really should define a successful realization of the American Dream in Death of A Salesman.

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""Death of A Salesman," by Arthur Miller, is a play that tells the story of a salesman, Willy Loman, who encounters frustration and failure as he reflects on and experiences his own life do to his beliefs of the American dream." >>Or it tells the story of Willy Loman, a salesman who reflects on the frustrations and failures of his life, which are due to ....

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Social class is a major factor in Death of a . Willy is a salesman. Willy believes that success comes from being well liked and popular and has tried desperately to instill his notions to his two boys Happy and Biff, Willy's biggest aspirations in life. His wife Linda is extremely supportive and is Willy's only connection to reality. While raising his boys and trying to instill his "American Dream", he fails to teach them any sense of morality, leading them down to what he feels is the wrong path. At one point, he defends Biff for stealing just because he was an amazing . "Loaded with it. Loaded! What is he stealing? He's giving it back, isn't he? Why is he stealing? What did I tell him? I never in my life told him anything but decent things." (Pg 41. Act 1)

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The American Dream is an issue portrayed through different aspects and characters in Death of a Salesman. Through the play, failed visions of the American Dream are contrasted with the successful ones, highlighting the abstract quality and implications of such delusions. Willy is unable to accept the disparity between his belief in his diminutive version of the dream and his own life. The failure of Willy’s dream is indicative of the fact that the bewildered circle of American society has broken down his personal relationships, and also that the society is unstable. This reveals the tragic side of the American Dream, where it does not bring anticipation, but affliction.

Death of a Salesman is a tragedy about the differences between the Loman family's dreams and the reality of their lives. The play is a scathing critique of and of the competitive, materialistic American society of the late 1940s. The storyline features Willy Loman, an average guy who attempts to hide his averageness and failures behind increasingly delusional hallucinations as he strives to be a "success."

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Even though he is set on Biff’s imminent success, Biff betrays him and he refuses to accept his father’s unattainable, dementia-driven dreams for him. Another example of betrayal in Death of a Salesman is when Willy, who fears betrayal from his family, ironically betrays Linda, by having an affair with another woman and also buying stockings for her. At this time, stockings were expensive and Willy’s unfaithfulness to his wife was shown when he bought stockings for a strange woman, rather than for Linda. At the end of the play, Willy ends up abandoning his own family, by committing suicide.


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His intense desire for gaining respect results in reliving past memories and triumphs to boost his ego, which is adopted by his family, much to their detriment. His son Biff suffers through immense embarrassment and shame derived from his father’s failed hopes, distorting his own sense of purpose and reality. The Loman’s all live in a world of illusions, and their issues mostly revolve around Willy. Linda encourages Willy’s inflated sense of self by providing false compliments and the negative aspects of his personality. Abandonment and Betrayal The issues of abandonment and betrayal are prominent in Death of a Salesman. Willy Loman’s father and brother abandoned him as a child, leaving him emotionally unstable.

The American Dream in Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman Material happiness provides the ambition behind seeking the "Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman ."

‘Death of a Salesman’ is a tragic play which explores the concept of material success, reputation and dreams. Willy Loman is a man who is chasing his unattainable goals and whose mind lives in the past. His mind is set on materialistic achievements, so much that his dreams are passed on to his family, as well. The Lomans are a family of delusional people – a family of lies and deceit. In the end, Willy is unable to abstain from reality anymore, and ultimately, results in him committing suicide. This play demonstrates the effect of the ‘American Dream’ and how people’s dreams can be shattered by false promises in their business lives and also their personal relationships.

The Dysfunctional American Dream in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller 1231 Words | 5 Pages

Death of a Salesman is widely considered even to this day to be one of the greatest American plays ever written. It's often ranked right up there with classics like Eugene O'Neill's , Thornton Wilder's , and Tennessee Williams' .