Willy believed good looks, material goods, and likeability would guarantee his sons this dream. Willy's perspective will eventually lead to his fall as the protagonist of the story. Willy also lies about many things throughout the story to make his image look better than he really is, "Linda asks how much Willy has sold and although he initially lies about the amount, Linda patiently waits for the truth, which is that he has barely made enough to pay the bills." (Arthur Miller) Willy's American dream is to be known to everyone and financially successful. Willy doesn't believe in hard work and honesty to achieve the highest respect but instead focuses on personal appearance and social judgement.
In Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller describes Willy Loman as a tragic character who failed to succeed his dreams. Willy never becomes a part of the American Dream, because he is always following other people’s dreams but never his own. He chooses to become a salesman only because he is truly inspired by Ben and Dave Singleman’s successes. Willy Loman, a rather hard working man, might succeed his own American Dream in another career that he is capable of. The fantastic illusions that he himself creates due to the inspiration of others’ successes eventually lead to his failure as well as his sons’.
His brother’s influence deluded him into believing that being “well-liked” and “personally attractive” are all it takes to acquire the American Dream, not hard work and innovation. As a result, Willy sets unrealistic goals for himself. He emphasizes his image and the need for material success, as seen when he complains to Linda about the out-of-date brand of their refrigerator. The ideas of appearance and materialism corrupting the American Dream parallel some themes of The Great Gatsby. After years of chasing the wrong dream, Willy refused to admit his failure, spiraling his mentality downward as he struggles to differentiate between his dream and reality.
Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman is the story of a man much like Miller's father, a salesman, "whose misguided notions of success result in disillusionment" (Draper 2360). The suppression of the main character, Willy Loman's, true nature is a result of his pursuit of a completely misguided dream. The fraudulent and miserable existence this generates is accentuated by the father-son relationship he shares with his son Biff. Willy Loman has surrendered the life of himself and his sons to a dream of success, while this dream is not particularly reprehensible, it is nevertheless unsuitable for him and can only be kept alive at the expense of his selfhood. Because Willy does not know himself, his ambitions ?are based on false conceptions of one?s talents and capacities?
Achieving the American Dream in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller Willy Loman is a man on a mission. His purpose in life is to achieve a false sense of the "American Dream," but is this what Willy Loman really wants? In Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller analyzes the American Dream by portraying to us a few days in the life of a washed up salesman named Willy Loman. The American Dream is a definite goal of many people, meaning something different to everyone. Willy's version is different from most people though; his is based more on being well-liked and achieving monetary successes rather than achieving something that will make him happy.
In Arthur Miller's Death of A Salesman readers are introduced to Willy, an ambitious salesman who just can't seem to get a break despite his drive. Willy's life is marked by failure, and an almost stubborn attachment to the idea of striking it big. Willy's life is ended by his own hands, the result of a broken dream that lead to a broken spirit. In many senses Willy represents the idea of the "everyman", the average working class man trying to get ahead, this is reflected in his attachment to the achievement of more wealth, and his idealized vision of how to get there the "American dream." However, Willy can be seen to represent more that just the average man, and it can be argued that Willy's hamartia is the hamartia of capitalism itself.
Dave represents a sort of father figure to Willy, and so Willy follows the same path in hopes to create the same future and succ... ... middle of paper ... ...impression that wealth and status are the keys to fulfillment in his life. Miller uses Willy’s beliefs of success and inability to show his love for his family, to show Willy's flawed view of the American Dream. His lack of understanding life and confusion about the real American Dream make him wrongfully teach his sons in what it means to be successful. Also, his failure is due to never really understanding what it means to succeed. Willy is a salesman, but what he sells is the wrong American Dream.
Although, his narcissism exhibits the common issue with American capitalism-it leads to greediness, unhappiness, and anger. This yearning for success can also cause an obsession with appearance and the self, which is a main focus in Willy Loman’s life. He says that to get somewhere, it is good to be “built like (an) Adonis,” which he tells his sons. At one point in his life, he felt he never had to ask for anything, and that when he walked in a room, he got what he wanted because “‘Willy Loman is here!’” Eventually, Willy ages and lacks the flair that he once had, and is left with unimpressive salesman skills. Due to America’s obsession with appearance, old-age is a plague to American society.
In the requiem of the play, Biff had a glimpse of personal recognition, although Willy, Linda, and Hap never discover the truth about themselves. Biff realizes Willy had the wrong dreams. In accepting the truth about his father, Biff is able to make a decision about his own future based on a realistic view of his capabilities. Is "Death of A Salesman" a tragedy or an illustration of pathos? By classic standards of tragedy the play fails only in the types of characters and lack of reversal of fortune, not in its examination of the consequences of man's harmartias.
His obsession with perfection is a reason for why, in reality, he did not have a happy family. By trying to make his family fit the image of the American Dream, he actually caused their unhappiness. Failing at this attempt of "perfecting" his family is just one example of Willy’s many mistakes. Due to the fact that he is a so-called perfectionist, accomplishment is never evident to Willy. Once he reaches any goal, he never sees the good in it; instead he only sees what he could have done better.