DEATH OF A SALESMAN
1. What is the setting for the play? How significant is this to the content? Would it be very different in a different setting?
· The setting of the play is in the late 1940’s in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Boston.
· Setting is an important part of Arthur Miller’s play, Death of a Salesman, for many reasons. First, the play’s main setting gives insight into the lives of Willy Loman and his son, Biff. Also, the setting of the play reveals a sense of irony in the play, as Willy does nothing to change or evade what he doesn’t like about city living. The way Willy Loman cares for his possessions that make up his setting prove that he is not wasteful.
2. What is an American dream? Does Willy achieve it? Why/ why not?
· The ideal that every US citizen should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative.
· Willy Loman was not strong enough for achieving the American Dream.
· All problems that person has originate in a childhood.
· He is a lair.
· He escapes into the past
· Willy Loman is too much addicted to his surroundings.
· He expected that his son will make one part of his dream.
· He cannot adapt for a new life or society.
· He gives too much attention to appearances.
· Loman tried to live someone else's life.
· He was trying to imitate his idol Dave Singleman.
· He did not appreciate what he already had.
· He follows the way that was already disclosed, where there were no prospects.
3. Foils: who might be a foil for Willy? ... For Biff?
· Charley is humble, generous, down to earth, and successful. His extreme character differences from Willy highlight Willy’s flaws of impracticality and arrogance. Willy appears naïve and desperate in contrast to his mature and knowledgeable neighbor.
· Bernard achieves the success that Willy wanted Biff to have, and in doing so, highlights Biff’s failure. Growing up as friends and neighbors, Bernard was the nerdy kid who came out on top because he didn’t expect his personality to carry him to success. In contrast, Biff was the popular football star who never focused on his education but relied instead on charisma. As an adult, Bernard is confident and well adjusted, whereas Biff is insecure and unsure how to be happy in life.
· As Biff’s brother, Happy grew up with the same parenting, values, and pressures that Biff experienced. But while Biff recognizes and rejects the lies his family has been living, Happy tries to keep them alive. You could say Happy is amoral; he steals his friends’ girlfriends, casually lies to get dates, promotes keeping secrets from his family, and is basically always phony. Biff, in strong contrast, has developed a policy of "no tolerance" for falsehood among the family. Where Biff looks at himself honestly and knows that working with his hands makes him happiest, Happy blindly pursues his father’s ideas of material success.
4. What similarities are there...