Info On Death Of A Salesman Summary
Willy Loman, an elderly failing salesman whose salary has been taken
away and works on straight commission, returns home from a sales trip
that he could not complete. He is weary and tired of life on the road.
His two grown sons, Biff and Happy have returned home to visit. Biff
has lost his way in life and has returned home after 15 years of
drifting. Happy, who lives in his own apartment is also home to visit.
Willy has a conversation with his wife, Linda, as he gets ready for
bed. Willy cannot understand why Biff is lost, with no job and no
money to his name. Willy reminisces about the past and the reader sees
for the first time that Willy sometimes lapses into another era, when
he talks about opening the windshield on his car. Linda suggests Willy
go to the kitchen have some whipped cheese before coming to bed.
Meanwhile, the boys are having a conversation in their old bedroom.
They discuss their father and the fact that he is becoming senile in
his old age. They have been on a date, and through their conversation
we see that Happy holds himself to low moral standards. They talk
about success, their hopes, and all the while Willy is downstairs
having a conservation with no one. Willy is immersed in one of his
flashbacks, where he relives conversations and scenes from the past.
The boys are embarrassed for him, and the scene transforms into a fall
day, 15 years ago.
Willy Loman is an elderly salesmen lost in false hopes and illusions.
The sales firm he works for no longer pays him salary. Working on
straight commission, Willy cannot bring home enough money to pay his
bills. After thirty-four years with the firm, they have spent his
energy and discarded him.
Willy's sons, Biff and Hap, are also failures, but Willy doesn't want
to believe this. He wants his sons, especially Biff, to succeed where
he has not. He believes his boys are great and cannot understand why
they are not successful. This is a major source of conflict throughout
As Willy has grown older, he has trouble distinguishing between the
past and present - between illusion and reality - and is often lost in
flashbacks where much of the story is told. These flashbacks are
generally during the summer after Biff's senior year of high school
when all of the family problems began.
Willy has had an affair with a women he meets on sales trips and once
caught by Biff. Now, Biff does not respect Willy and they do not get
along. Willy eventually commits suicide so that Biff can have the
insurance money to become successful with.
Chynna Carby 10GGY...