Dreams in Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman

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Do you ever have a dream? What is your dream? Having a dream is crucial for people to work hard to make the dream come true. In Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman, the main character, had a dream— to be a well-liked salesman—and had strived for this dream throughout his whole life. But he committed suicide to end his life. He was not happy in the process of achieving his dream. Arthur Miller, the author, reveals a negative attitude towards Willy’s behavior and beliefs. Willy is a man with flaws that leads to his downfall. I share the same attitude with Miller. Yet, I pity the tragedy of Willy. Miller reveals a negative attitude towards Willy’s behavior by displaying Willy’s poor parenting skills. Being a father of Biff and Happy, Willy should teach Biff and Happy with correct moral values. When Biff steals football from the locker room, Willy first told Biff “to return that.”(30) This is the right thing to say to Biff as stealing is illegal. However, Willy then contradicts himself by saying, “Sure, he’s gotta practice with a regulation size ball, doesn’t he? … Coach’ll probably congratulate you on your initiative!”(30) In this incident, Willy teaches Biff wrong moral ethics that stealing is acceptable. Besides stealing, Willy encourages Biff to play football instead studying. When Bernard, Biff’s friend, asks Biff to study, Willy argues that ‘’with scholarships to three universities they’re gonna flunk him?’’(33) As Biff is good at playing football, Willy is confident that Biff is able to get a scholarship and get accepted by the universities easily. Aside from having poor parenting skills, Willy also fails to act as a role model for his sons. When Biff discovers his father’s affair with “the woman,” Willy l... ... middle of paper ... ...ly has wasted his years in pursuit of a goal that is unattainable and wants to remind us that we should not set our goal too high. Otherwise, we will waste our life and have nothing in the end. People usually enjoy the happiness during their chasing of dream. However, Willy can’t find the happiness in the progress of chasing his dream. He should have realized that he was chasing a wrong dream and had other dreams instead. Though I agree that Willy deserves his tragedy, meanwhile, I pity Willy’s tragedy. Willy has no parents to learn from so he learns the things all by himself and nobody teaches him what to do. It is not his fault for having a wrong dream. At least, I think that he is better than people who have no dream. He did strive for his dream and tried to make it comes true. However, he was too stubborn to accept others’ opinions and this leads to his tragedy.
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