For Willy Loman, the idea of living a successful life is done through creating a strong reputation. He has gone through life believing that success is tailored through the people you know and how well one is liked. Because of his devotion to this idea, his children have grown up with the skewed perception of their popularity being valued more than their knowledge. When speaking to Biff on this matter, Willy says, “Bernard can get the best marks in school, [...] but when he gets out in the business world [...] you are going to be five times ahead of him [...] Be liked and you will never want” (20-21). Willy is strongly convinced that it is about who you know, not what you know. When speaking in regards to Dave Singleman, the only thing Willy pays attention to is how many people liked him. He assumed that his success came from his connection to the people at his funeral, not the work he put in as a salesman. When arguing with his Biff over his failed sales career, Willy cannot help but believe that their family has to be special. He thinks that one needs to be highly valued and specia...
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...d people only see the results, not the process.
Unfortunately, many people in today’s world have similar beliefs to Willy. They believe that fame or fortune equals successful, when in reality it takes hard work and knowledge. People seem to only focus on what they can see in the moment, similar to how Willy only sees the amount of people at Dave Singleman’s funeral. He was unaware of how much work went towards gaining that popularity, and just assumed it came naturally. With the growing use of social media, the same mixed notions are being spread to future generations. They see small highlights of people’s success that they do not know, and just assume no work went towards it. If this mindset is kept up, finding success will be tough for many. Death of a Salesman should be used as an example towards people, that if you work hard in life, anything can be achieved.
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