Death Of A Salesman

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 12th grade April 2001

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Death of a Salesman Review Since the beginning of time, dreams have always been perceived as visions of hope, and fulfillment to one's greatest desires. In times of trouble and despair, the safe environment of a dream shields one's mind for the dangers of the real world. However, in reality, there is one dream that many people in the world strive towards. Mostly influenced by the gold and land rush in the nineteenth-century, the idea of getting rich fast has been categorized as the "American dream."� Within the play, Death of a Salesman, one hopeful man dares to take on the challenge of trying to achieve this impossible dream.

Before the Depression, Willy Loman saw America as an untapped mine of opportunity, offering the alluring promise of both success and riches. Unlike today's businessmen, the traveling salesman was a very profitable job before the Depression. Thinking that this occupation will lead him to attain his dream of being rich, Loman decided to become one.

Every week, he takes a journey to stake his bid for success. It would be difficult to miss the survival of the American frontier mentality in the figure of the traveling salesman.

However, even after years to striving and hard work, Loman finds that the challenge that he had taken on had failed both him and his son. With an adverse effect of not achieving this dream, in a sense, it had trapped Willy and son Biff in a transitional period of American history. Willy, now sixty-three, carried out a large part of his career during the Depression and World War II. The promise of success that entranced him in the optimistic 1920's was broken by the harsh economic realities of the 1930's.

As the years passed, Willy and his wife Linda still tried...