Comparing Willy and Biff Loman's False Perceptions of Reality

Essay by xuix4lifeHigh School, 10th gradeA, July 2014

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Pasha Oganyan

Mr. Fragomeni


July 17, 2013

Willy and Biff Loman - the False Perceptions of Reality

Many people experience having faulty values and believing in things that may not necessarily be true. In the play Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, the main characters Willy and Biff are portrayed as having a false perception of reality. The life that they believe they live and the value that they claim to have in society is untrue and shows their constant unawarenessof the truth. The depiction Willy and Biff have of themselves causes them to chase "all the wrong goals" and ultimately leads to Willy's demise. Willy and Biff live their lives having strong misleading beliefs, which cause them to live in their dream worlds and to be ignorant of the reality.

Throughout the play, Willy believes that he is a very known and exceptional salesman. He creates himself an illusion that he is very well liked and has a great reputation in the business world.

"They laugh at me, heh? Go to Filene's, go to the Hub, go to Slattery's. Boston. Call out the name Willy Loman and see what happens! Big shot (Miller,62)!" Willy does not recognize that he has failed to become the salesman that he has always wanted to be. He does not acknowledge that he is no longer successful at doing his job and that he has greatly regressed as a businessman. Willy strongly believes in the fake image that he has built of himself and does not wish to admit that he is no longer useful. His pride reflects his increasing blindness to reality and he continuously pretends that he is successful. However, in reality Willy's perception of the reality is false. His belief of him being an effective and popular salesman is...