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Minor Characters' Impact on Willy Loman in Arthur Miller's play, Death of a Salesman

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Minor Characters' Impact on Willy Loman in Arthur Miller's play, Death of a Salesman


In the Arthur Miller play Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman comes in contact with several characters, many of whom prompt him to examine his past as well as his conscience. Charley's son Bernard is such a character. Lacking dimension and depth of character, Bernard functions primarily as a foil to expose Willy's tragic and pathetic nature.

The other characters have no real interaction with Willy that would allow for development. During Willy's first flashback, Bernard appears only to remind Biff of the Regents exam. Willy refers to Bernard as a "pest" and an "anemic," and Biff mimics his father by saying that Bernard is "liked, but not well liked." Despite Bernard's academic talents, Willy and his ...


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