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Death Of A Salesman By Arthur Miller


When we think about the most prominent figures in American theatre, one name instantly sprangs up in our mind. He is none other than the famous American playwright, essayist and a theatre activist and father figure in the history of American theatre as well as American Literature. Born in the year 1915, in Manhattan, Arthur Miller has gifted us some of the memorable plays which includes All My Sons, Death of a salesman, The crucible and many more. One of his plays the death of a salesman became popular in particular and eventually went on to attain the status of a cult classic in the history of American theatre. Death of a salesman was penned by Arthur Miller in the year 1949. The play was a huge hit and won the Pulitzer Prize in the year 1949 and was premiered in the Broadway theatre in New York.

The plot of the death of a salesman revolves around some particular life events of the main character-a salesman named William Loman often referred in the play as “Willy”. In the play, it is shown that the Willy often thinks and hallucinates about certain events and he cannot remember whether it is from the past or its only his imagination. It is depicted in the play that due to his ailing health and constant struggles William is becoming mentally unstable with the passing time. The play tries to explore the unexplored world of reality and imagination or illusion and also focuses on the importance to become successful in life. It ends up explaining that the term success bears different meaning in different person’s life and the term is itself very relative and at a very basic level everyone wants their dreams and wishes to be fulfilled and wants to be happy. The central characters apart from the salesman himself includes Uncle Ben, Charles, Bernard, Mrs. William Loman-Linda, Harold and Bliff Loman- Willy’s two sons, Howard Wagner- Willy’s bossy boss, Miss Francis- a woman with whom William Loman had a short lived affair and cheated on her wife, Jenny, Stanley, Miss Forsythe and Letta. William Loman in his lifetime suffers from the guilt for not being able to fulfill his unrealistic dreams and as a result he slowly but unknown to his family members slips into depression. And later, His elder son along with her mother tries to revive and brick back joys in his father Mr. William Loman’s life.

The term death used in this play is used mainly denoting a man’s mental death in lack of proper knowledge about being happy and successful.