Fallacies and Distortions in Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman Essay examples

Fallacies and Distortions in Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman Essay examples

Length: 2844 words (8.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Research Papers

Open Document

Essay Preview

A logical fallacy can be defined as a “flawed argument” (Kirszner and Mandell 84). It can be considered, “ a writer who inadvertently uses logical fallacies is not thinking clearly or logically…” (Kirszner and Mandell 84). In the play, Death of a Salesman, there is an assortment of situations exemplifying different kinds of logical fallacies. Cognitive distortions are also present in this play. Some of the characters in Death of a Salesman have thoughts that seem to be slightly unclear. These distortions sometimes result when people “…think in extremes…” (“Cognitive Distortions”).

In the year 1949, Arthur Miller created the play, Death of a Salesman. This is the play that made him most famous (Gioia and Kennedy 1763). “…This work is unquestionably the pinnacle of his achievement” (Gioia and Kennedy 1763). Miller wrote many additional plays, but is best known for Death of a Salesman.

Arthur Miller was born in Harlem, New York on October 17, 1915 (“Blooms Notes” 8). Miller and his family lived in upscale Harlem for the first fourteen years of his life (8). Then after a terrible stock market crash that affected the family heavily, they moved to Brooklyn, New York (8). He attended the University of Michigan where he studied playwriting (8). Besides writing plays he wrote radio scripts, and worked as a steamfitter in World War II (Gioia and Kennedy 1763). He began writing plays around 1936, but “It was the next play that secured his

reputation: Death of a Salesman…” (“Bloom’s Notes” 8). Other plays that Miller has written include The Crucible and All My Sons. He also “…published an autobiography, several volumes of essays, two collections of short stories, and two novels…” (Gioia and Ken...

... middle of paper ...

...Distortions.” Healthy Mind.com. 2004. 5 Feb. 2009.

< http://www.healthymind.com/s-distortions.html>

Hadhomi, Leah. “Dramatic Rhythm in Death of a Salesman”. Willy Loman. New York: Chelsea House, 1991.

Kirszner, Laurie G., and Stephen R. Mandell. The Brief Wadsworth Handbook. United States: Thompson, 2008.

Miller, Arthur. Miller’s Death of a Salesman. Ed. Harold Bloom. Broomall: Chelsea House, 1996.

Miller, Arthur. “Death of a Salesman”. Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing. Ed. Dana Gioia and X.J. Kennedy.10th Ed. New York: Pearson, 2007.

Murray, Edward. “The Thematic Structure in Death of a Salesman.” Readings on Arthur Miller: Death of a Salesman. San Diego: Greenhaven Press Inc., 1999.

Porter, Thomas E. “Willy Loman and the American Dream.” Readings on Death of a Salesman. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, Inc., 1999.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Arthur Miller's The Crucible Essay

- Arthur Miller's 'The Crucible' The Crucible, written by Arthur Miller, is a tragic story of injustice suffered by an innocent community who are subjected to the hypocritical, prideful judges of their trial. These Judges use their power to eliminate evidence of their mistakes and return their community to puritanical ways. The leaders of Salem are not concerned with seeking the truth and justice, but with maintaining their authority and reputations; this objective leads them to consistently rejecting truth, against all logic and evidence of their senses....   [tags: Essay on The Crucible]

Research Papers
667 words (1.9 pages)

The Death Of A Salesman By Arthur Miller Essay

- The Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller is a play about Willy Loman and his loving family. The Allegory of the Cave is a symbol for the differences between thought up ideas and what we see as reality. Plato’s main idea is to show us that what we see in the real world is not everything we actually see even if it’s not visibly apparent to us. The Allegory informs us how the world is a mysterious and dark cave, how us humans live as trapped enclosed prisoners unable to do anything, and everything we go through as experiences are shadows casted on the wall....   [tags: Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller]

Research Papers
2322 words (6.6 pages)

Death Of A Salesman By Arthur Miller Essay

- ... I have to agree with Thompson’s statement about Willy’s reference to Biff as Hercules. Although young Biff is well-built and good looking and has all the qualities Willy believes will guarantee success, these characteristics are only on the surface and Willy cannot see beyond that whether in the business world or life in general. He simple cannot face reality that sales is not a proper career path for him. In “The Right Dream in Miller’s Death of a Salesman” Stephen A. Lawrence states that the relationship between Willy and Biff is that of intense love and hate that they have for each other....   [tags: Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller]

Research Papers
1097 words (3.1 pages)

Death Of A Salesman By Arthur Miller Essay

- ... In the beginning he labels Biff as a lazy bum and then later contradicts himself by saying he is not lazy. It’s in his immediately changing gears that one sees he negates any proper parenting he could have given Biff. Willy Loman does want his son to become successful, but his view of success is delusional, in Willy’s eyes in order to be successful, you need to be well-liked. Most parents take their child’s academic studies very seriously because they determine their future career and occupation, however; Willy believes that appearances are more important....   [tags: Death of a Salesman, Family, Son, Arthur Miller]

Research Papers
2078 words (5.9 pages)

Death Of A Salesman By Arthur Miller Essay

- ... In one of Willy’s flashbacks he recalls the time when his sons and him were outside cleaning their Chevy. Willy informs Biff and Happy the success of his business trips and how everyone residing in Boston adores him. He mentions that due to the admiration of people he does not even have to wait in lines. He ultimately teaches his sons that being liked by others is the way to fulfilling one’s life and removing your worries. These ideals, that one does not need to work for success, demonstrate Willy’s deluded belief of achieving a prosperous life from the admiration and acceptance of others....   [tags: Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller, Lee J. Cobb]

Research Papers
1060 words (3 pages)

Death Of A Salesman By Arthur Miller Essay

- ... 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 special in order to have a successful life: “I am not a dime a dozen. I am Willy Loman, and you are Biff Loman!” (105). Willy has spent his whole life hung up on needing to be well-know, when his time could have been spent towards increasing his education for his professional career....   [tags: Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller, Want, WANT]

Research Papers
1051 words (3 pages)

Essay about Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman

- Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman Many times while reading modern literature you will hear reference to the “American Dream”. What the various authors and or readers must decide is whether or not this is a true goal. There are many arguments that state that the “American Dream” is a figment of imagination. There are others that believe this is an attainable goal. One of the discussions that is held is what the true definition of the “American Dream” is. There are beliefs that think money and power are the ideal things to strive for....   [tags: Arthur Miller Death Salesman]

Research Papers
1761 words (5 pages)

Essay on Arthur Miller's Death of Saleman

- Arthur Miller's Death of Saleman On February 10, 1949, at the Morosco Theatre in New York, Death of a Salesman opened. It was immediately acclaimed as a perfect blend of script, setting, staging, and acting. The New Yorker called the play a mixture of "compassion, imagination, and hard technical competence not often found in our theater." Death of a Salesman swept the award field in 1949, winning the Drama Critics' Circle award, the Tony, Theatre Club, and Front Page awards, as well as the much-coveted Pulitzer Prize....   [tags: Arthur Miller's Death of Saleman]

Free Essays
3354 words (9.6 pages)

Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman Essays

- Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman was written after the second World War while the American economy was booming. Society was becoming very materialistic, and the idea that anyone could “make it” in America was popular. These societal beliefs play a large part in Death of a Salesman, a play in which the main character, Willy Loman, spends a lifetime chasing after the American Dream. Willy was sold on the wrong dream. He was enamored with a myth of American ideals and chose to put aside his real talents in pursuit of a fantasy....   [tags: Death of a Salesman Arthur Miller Essays]

Research Papers
2006 words (5.7 pages)

Death of Salesman by Arthur Miller Essay

- Death of Salesman by Arthur Miller The Requiem seems to simply conclude the play at the funeral and let us see the other character's view of events with some retrospect. However, with closer scrutiny, we see that old issues and resentments are still very prevalent. The Requiem can be split into two halves. The first half sees Charley, Biff, Linda and Happy over Willy's grave. Each character is unique in their perspective at this point, reflecting Willy's own change of perspective towards the end of play and reminding us of several themes in the text....   [tags: Death Salesman Arthur Miller Essays]

Research Papers
811 words (2.3 pages)