Death Of A Salesman Journal Entries English Literature Essay

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For such a long time you have been living under the impression that popularity and handsomeness gets you through life. Let me be the one to tell you that you need to wake up and realize that you are neither. Because if you were then I'm sure they would not have removed you from work. You are incapable of doing a good job and that's what matters when it comes down to it. Neither popularity nor handsomeness matters when one's intention is to make money. You have to be the best, and only your best is good enough.

Your false impression hinders you from seeing that you have destroyed the relationship you once had with your son. Not because of anything he has done, but all because of you. You are a fake and this is the way he sees you. Your obsession with the "American Dream" has turned you into a blind man. Reality is knocking at your door. Stop ignoring it and let it in. You need to be realistic. It's about time.

Today I suspected my husband of wanting to kill himself. I don't know what to do. What should I do? I'm afraid. I wanted to help him, but then I got scared of what he'd say if he knew I knew he wanted to kill himself so I put his "weapon" back where I found it. I hope he sees the mistake he'll be making before it's too late. Dear God help him.

And a few days back he came home and told me he lost control of the car on the road! Journal, I'm afraid for him. My poor husband. What is happening to him? I can't take it anymore but I can't just walk out on him. He's my husband for goodness sake! In my heart I'm yearning to help him but at the same time I'm a little petrified of doing it. I keep my tongue whenever I can. Just don't want to upset the poor soul. I will just pray for him.

Don't you feel a little if not an extreme amount of jealousy about the fact that your father from you were younger preferred your brother Biff over you? You are now thirty-two years old and he still does. If I were you I know I would, because parents aren't suppose to show favoritism towards their children and your father certainly does it. I'm assuming you were a little upset as well that your father put Biff before you all the time. He just doesn't seem to see that you are his son too and you need him as much as Biff may need him.

It's a good thing though that you're independent; living in your own apartment and have a job. At least you know that you don't have to depend on that father of yours. Because if you had, he would have most certainly let you down. Just as Biff had let him down. It's a pity to see how much he prefers Biff who can't hold a steady job nor has a place to call his home. But life goes on Happy. Hold your head high and don't dwell too much on the fact that your father has a favourite and he isn't you.

I hate that my father prefers Biff over me. I hate it, I hate it, I hate it. But what can I do? I've tried my best but he still prefers Biff. But I don't understand him. Biff is no longer the popular kid, he's a nuisance to my father as far as I can tell and yet he's preferred over me. What a confusion! I just hate that he prefers my older brother but what can I do? I'm just going to live my life. At least I know Biff isn't such a charmed one with the ladies. He might have charmed his way into the heart of many people when he was younger, but I'm guessing by the way he gets along with our father it's no longer that way. Serves him right. Always getting what he wants. That Biff.

Of all people, Linda had the strength to bring Willy out of his illusory world and back to reality, but she fails to utilize this. Linda has little personal initiative and would rather be led than disturb matters. Linda's role in the play is not so complex. She is a simple person who cannot bring herself to act when she must do so. When she realizes Willy has been contemplating suicide, she does not really face the problem and try to discuss it with him. This is the worst thing that she has done in the play. When she told her son, she even encouraged him not to do anything about it. We see this in Act I, scene 10 we see the conversation between her and Biff:

Arthur Miller in the play, Death of a Salesman uses his characters to portray the difference between the success and failures of the American system. Willy is the salesman whose imagination is much larger than his ability to sell, while Linda is Willy's wife who stands by him even in his absence of realism. Biff and Happy are their ignorant sons who follow in the delusion of Willy's footsteps. Ben, Willy's dead brother is the only Loman that achieved the 'American Dream'. Charlie and his son Bernard were also successful in fulfilling the dream.

Social class was also one of the major factors during Miller's time. That is why he has mad Willy to believe that success comes from being well liked and popular. Willy had tried desperately to instill his notions to his two boys Happy and Biff, Willy's biggest aspirations in life. Linda is extremely supportive, and is Willy's only connection to reality. While raising the boys, and trying to instill the 'American Dream' he fails to teach them any sense of morality, leading them down to what he feels is the wrong path. Willy's goal throughout life was to climb out of his social class. As a salesman, Willy was a failure and he tried desperately to make his sons never end up like him. As a result, he loses his mind and his grasp on reality.

Miller portrays the roles of the wife to her husband and family during this period. Before World War II began, women were subservient to their husbands, taking care of the home and her family. Linda's character is an example of this. She was a housewife who was up to make her husband's breakfast before he went off to work; she mended things that needed mending and she washed. These are a few of the roles of women during the 1940s, even though not much has changed during that time.

Apart from taking care of her husband, she also had the responsibility of taking care of the rest of the family, meaning her two sons. Biff and Happy's character are portrayed as men but we see where they are still scolded by their mother. That was also one of the roles of the mother. With the help of the husband, it was her duty to instill respect in her children. They were taught to have discipline for their parents as well as for others.

The other criticism, Feminist Criticism, states that this is concerned with, "…the ways in which literature reinforce or undermine the economic, political, social, and psychological oppression of women." This critic refers to Linda, as she is the only major female character in the play. Because she is a woman, her character in the play is seen as a stay-at-home wife and mother. Women during the time this play was written were not allowed to go out and work. They believed that taking care of the home was a woman's job, and nothing more. In Act II, we see where Willy goes into the kitchen and sees Linda mending stockings. Even though he had become furious it is not for the reason that we were imagining. It is only because he feels a sense of guilt that Linda is mending old stockings while he usually buys new ones for his secret lover.

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