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Death of a Salesman: Willy

            Willy's Useless Advice About Success.
             Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman is a play that illustrates a family that lives in a dream world but ultimately comes into reality. Like many people of this country, as well as others, the Lomans strive to live out the American dream. Being well-liked, popular, good-looking, and wealthy were characteristics that were emphasized in the Loman household. Eventually, the Lomans understand that their family is average with common problems such as financial instability, marital troubles, and character flaws.
             Willy Loman, husband and the father of two sons, is a sixty-year-old, insecure traveling salesman. With all of his heart, Loman believes in the American dream of effortless success, fame, and fortune. The people in his life seem to have accomplished much in their lives; therefore, Willy tends to ask advice from them. Ben, Willy's recently deceased older brother, is the wealthy and most significant idol in the salesman's life. The family's neighbor, Charley, is a very successful man who owns a business, and his son, Bernard, is a lawyer who has the opportunity to argue a case before the United States Supreme Court. On the other hand, after thirty-four years at the firm, Loman only earns commission and constantly borrows money from Charley to pay bills. Unlike those who surround him, the old salesman fails to achieve the life he has always visualized. .
             In spite of his own failures, Willy raises his two boys to believe in the successful life that he dreamed. He strives to relive his desired life through the oldest son, Biff. Loman insists that his son must be well-liked and popular; that is the key to a successful life. Although Biff was on the football team and a popular jokester, in the end, none of these elements guaranteed his success. Disappointingly, Biff has become a thirty-four year old "disgrace" to Willy (1323). Happy, the youngest offspring, is constantly in Biff's shadow, but he balances this disadvantage with his good looks and swarms of women.

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