Death of a Salesman- Essay-Reflection of American Society

Essay by libbiiHigh School, 11th gradeA-, May 2009

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Death of a Salesman- EssayIn Death of Salesman, the conflicts that the characters face through out in the play, can be interpreted as reflections of the problems in America's society today. The majority, if not all of these problems can be traced back to Willy Loman as the source. Willy Loman's longing to be successful (either actually through himself or through his sons) was the origin of all the other problems, and was the reason he could not control himself and he ruined his life and his family.

The most obvious societal problem face in the play is greed. Willy's obsession with having money is a perfect symbol of the larges part of society, the part whose lives revolve around acquiring money, and having "the best". The people have unrealistic expectations just like Willy. In Act 1, Willy is hallucinating about his brother Ben and he says, "The man knew what he wanted and went out and got it! Walked into a jungle, and comes out, the age of twenty-one, and he's rich!" (41).

Willy and countless people in today's society, have unrealistic expectations, and are never honestly satisfied. They are willing to do anything to get to the top, even if it means hurting others, and most of the time they are left with nothing. Just like Willy in the garden, muttering, "Nothing's planted. I don't have a thing in the ground"; because they have done nothing substantial with their lives and have not "planted" anything (122). They used all their time concerned with money and neglected to invest in anything concrete, like real love, and having a family. They have no real lives outside of materialistic things, just like Willy.

Willy's constant disregard for others and their lives is another example of a problem America's society faces...