Comparing and Contrasting the Marriage of Willy and Linda Loman in Death of a Salesman to the Marriage of Big Daddy and Big Mama Pollitt in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.
Two great play writes, and two famous plays. Both plays have been criticized, critiqued, and praised for decades. They have been presented in Broadway, and in high school auditoriums. They have been lauded as great works, and condemned for their content. This paper will not argue which one of these authors is greater, nor will it try to convince you which play is better. The only goal of this work is to compare and contrast the marriage relationship of Willy and Linda Loman with Big Daddy and Big Mama Pollitt. To accomplish this fully a brief synopsis of both plays will be offered, followed by a comparison of Willy Loman with Big Daddy Pollitt. Then a comparison of Linda Loma with Big Mama Pollitt is offered before comparing and contrasting the marriages of the Lomans with the Pollitts. Only then can one fully get into the mindset of the authors and their characters.
Death of a Salesman mainly takes place inside of Willy's "disturbed, faltering brain, as he relives crucial scenes from the past even while groping through present-day encounters." Although we glimpse what Willy is "seeing" inside his head, the stage setting is the kitchen and two bedrooms of Willy's house, crowded on all sides by apartment buildings. "Willy is concerned about Biff" his older son, but practically ignores his younger son, Happy. Through Willy's mental wanderings we discover he has had an affair, and despite all his hard work and bragging, he barely manages to make ends meet. Willy not only can't convince the manager of the business to give him an easier job at his age, but he manages to get himself fired. His sons abandon him at a restaurant when his mind once again wanders off, and eventually Biff and Willy quarrel trying to make each other understand one another.