Biff, on the other hand, had it worse because his father sold him lies about his importance in the business industry, which forced Biff to admire Willy and strive to be like him one day. Willy’s consistent stroking of Biff’s ego misled Biff into thinking that he could get away with anything simply because he was “popular” and “well-liked”. However, when Biff accidentally stumbles upon his father’s adultery, his world crashes in on itself as he loses his sense of identity. He quotes, “I realized what a ridiculous lie my whole life has been” (Act II). Willy wasn’t much better with his “friends”.
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.
Willy wants Biff to be the successful man that he never was and feels that Biff will not achieve success in the occupation he has taken. Furthermore, Willy was unable to admit his faults. His pride was so great that he even lied to his own family, borrowing money weekly from his neighbor, Charley, and then saying it was his salary. He tried to justify his affair with a strange woman when caught by Biff. He...
Biff is okay with his failures because he doesn’t let them overtake his life the way Willy’s failures have. Biff used to idolize his father and believed that the only way to happiness was through material achievement. Though after Biff caught Willy and his mistress, he realized that Willy didn’t have the answers to a happy successful life. After this, Biff moves out west (which represents freedom from Willy’s expectations) and lives well. Instead of Biff becoming what Willy always wanted to be, he goes and searches for himself which is why Willy dislikes
Willy trapped his mind around the fact that the only way to be successful is to be a salesman. For example, Willy is good with his hands and would make an excellent carpenter, but he doesn’t value that job as successful. He tries to raise his kids the same way. One of them decides to follow his father, Happy. The other, Biff has an epiphany one day and says to himself, “Why am I trying to become something I am not.” This realization that Biff has taunts Willy and puts him in a world of hurt, as once again he struggles to free his mind from the one cookie cutter way to success.
Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman is about a traveling salesman named Willy Loman who has hit a rough patch in his life. Willy seems to have a normal family, with a wife and two boys. His sons, Happy and Biff, while different, represent Willy in many ways. Willy always strived to be successful and struggled for acceptance, which also represents his sons personalities and outlooks. As Pamela Loos says, “Willy Loman fails to understand himself and esteems a career path that goes against who he truly is,” this keeps him from ever being happy with himself.
His boss was looking to fire him for a long time. His whole life, he has had the wrong idea. “Success doesn’t come from just luck, popularity, or personality. All throughout the Death of a Salesman, Loman tells his two sons, Biff and Happy, that the key to success in life is to be “well liked” and that all you need is “a smile and a shoeshine.” (Brett) However, Willy completely ignored his true calling of working with his hands, to become a business man. He was so infatuated with the American Dream, he didn’t realize that he wasn’t a good Salesman, and would have succeeded as ... ... middle of paper ... ...ity to indulge in a world that doesn’t exist.
Throughout this play Willy believes that in order to be successful, it doesn’t just take hard work, but it takes a likeable personality, the ability to be popular and well known. Willy encourages this perception onto his sons Biff and Happy. However, throughout the play Willy realizes that the American Dream he was chasing wasn’t going to be achieved, which ultimately lead to his death. In the beginning of the play when Bernard notifies his Uncle Willy that Biff is failing math. Willy entirely disregards Bernard and only cares about Bi... ... middle of paper ... ...grasp the truth of his unaccomplished life and his failure as a father and a husband and a successful man.
He constantly reminds them, “the man who makes an appearance in the business world, the man who creates personal interest, is the man who gets ahead” (Miller 67). This is also ironic because Willy is the man who creates personal interest in the business world, but when everyone passes away he is left with nothing but the past to remember. This false reality that Willy creates for Biff brings on the conflicts between the father and son duo due to the fact that Biff fails as a result of the way he was raised. So by the time Biff goes to interview for his first job he thinks that his success will come with no effort
As someone who is on the other side of success, Willy has an overwhelming sense of hopelessness. He has lost most of the business contacts he enjoyed when he was younger, and has not been successful in updating his selling methods for the generation he is now interacting with. His relationship with everyone centers on fantasies and exaggerated truths, and is an attempt to show to others that he is successful, but most see through this and it ultimately results in his alienation from society. The American Dream for Willy is elusive even though he worked hard and followed its success formula. Hi... ... middle of paper ... ...ed; however, Linda, his wife, wonders during his funeral where all of his friends are.