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‘Death of a Salesman’ as written by Arthur Miller is a play that presents characters whose time has passed and who seem incapable of understanding and adjusting to the present. Willy is one such example especially when his case is viewed from a lens of the relationship he has with his children. Willy desires a blissful life so much. He pushes his sons to strive for things they do not want. This shows the real character of Willy. Willy desires to be liked well and his desire is to be honorable; the motive of many people in attaining who are finding hard to accept reality. It has not dawned to him that things are falling apart on his side. Willy is very desperate to make his son pursue similar goals although he has already failed in achieving them. He lives in illusions and dreams. For instance he says, “You take me, for instance. I never have to wait in line to see a buyer” (Miller 21). This actually is not true about himself. He has failed in many occasions. Despite failing to make progress in one occasion, Willy continues to persist in things that he has been doing previously but failing over and over again.
It is very much in the belief according to Willy that to be liked and attractive will get an individual to high places in America and would help in attaining the best in life. This is what Willy advocates for and as far as his sons are concerned, he will stop at nothing but the best for them. Willy ignores the idea that hard work would propel him to where he desires to be in life. He lives in fantasies and wants the same for his sons. To be liked is his ultimate goal, something that many hope for in pursuit of happiness and the material wealth. The lifestyle as seen with Biff is not actually in line with what Willy defines as success. There is still much required of him to settle down and get a job of a salesman. This has no connection with Willy’s belief. This time dispensation has troubled many people including Willy. He is not ready to be offered with a job. He says, “What the hell are you offering me a job for?”(Miller 29). Ideally, these are the fruitless struggles and illusions of achieving a good life which Miller presents as a world of fantasy. Willy still cannot comprehend what is happening around. The failure to meet his family obligation is indeed a humiliating affair for me. He finds it hard to make necessary adjustment to support his family. He is too rigid and arrogant yet with nothing to show.
Willy can simply be defined as a miserable piece of cowhide. He has very promiscuous ideologies. He is does not want to work hard yet he desires a better life. There is no logic in what he says. His children seem to follow suit. The love for this book is contrasted to hard work. The pursuit for a good life as held by Biff being completely in contrast to that of Willy is a very crucial element of the book that needs to be well comprehended. It is the desire of everyone to attain the success as they live. However, a person must have an understanding of where they are before taking the next bold step.
It is a pity to see Willy’s folly and the much he has been blinded to an extent where he does not seem to make out the best choice for him and the family. Holding firmly on to the past has seriously affected the person Will has become. He does not seem to conquer his past and check into reality. He steels himself through illusions and dreams. Again, he undergoes an identity crisis and falls into great contradiction that has immensely affected his view of life. He is forcing his sons to work on things that are not their passion. He wants to mislead his sons through his misguided opinions about hard work and being liked. His well being starts to disintegrate the moment he cannot relate the past to the present. Willy is indeed stuck in his old ideologies and memories and does not seem to acknowledge new life changes.