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AS and A Level: Arthur Miller
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Willy also gives up things for his children. In Act One when Willy recalls his brother Ben we see this, Willy-"When Ben came from Africa that time? Didn't he give me a watch fob with a diamond in it? Linda-"You pawned it, dear. Twelve, thirteen years ago. For Biff's radio correspondence course." He is willing, for his son's education, to give up something precious to him. Even towards the end of Act One Willy has been attempting to give up his own life for, what he thinks, is for the good of his sons and Linda, his own life.
- Word count: 1346
is the first line shouted by Linda in the play. This is very significant in the play, as Willy Loman is the protagonist character in the play, and all focus is on him. Linda is very attentive and carrying towards Willy and this is clearly shown when she asks, "Why? What happened? Did something happen, Willy?" She is concerned about Willy and she shows this through the use of questions one after the other. She then goes onto ask, "Don't you feel well?"
- Word count: 1286
Biff (of his father): He had the wrong dreams. All, all, wrong. Discuss Biff's assessment of Willy's 'dreams' in the context of the play as a whole
Miller shows his criticism through Willy's bewilderment at what he sees as his lack of success as a result of this cultural dream which Willy's inability to waver from is: "all, all wrong". Willy dreams for his sons to become successful, believing this is possible through his faith in the American Dream. However in high school Willy's sons were never encouraged to work hard. They were popular and good-looking and as far as Willy is concerned they will achieve his dreams of success for them because of this.
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During the time "Death of a Salesman" was created, Post-War United States was undergoing a metamorphosis into a new era of prosperity, anti-Communist paranoia, and social and philosophical change. For Miller to criticize the American dream so openly was professional suicide. Indeed Miller was to fall foul of the Senator McCarthy's committee that investigated suspected Communist sympathisers, and was subsequently found guilty meaning that for a short time his personal and professional life was in ruins. In 'Death of a Salesman' Miller presents the audience with a play involving ideas and social criticism.
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In the context of the play, this means that a salesman may achieve something big, whereas an ordinary worker, however secure the job, will never earn large amounts. Since money is the key to success, those who do not earn large amounts of money cannot survive in the capitalist world. This is because they are unable to purchase products that those with a lot of money have. Even though Willy is a salesman, he has never made large amounts of money.
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So, it is as if material success would bring the people in 1949 happiness. In relation to this point, Miller explores the nature of success by presenting the strong relationship between the amount of money an individual has and the success of an individual in a consumerist society. Since the more money an individual is making, the more consumer goods they are able to purchase and the more successful they become as an individual in a consumerist society. However, Miller also explores the nature of success in Death of a Salesman through its dehumanizing effect on society; especially in relation
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Other men - I don't know - they do it easier." The reality is that Willy is not doing as well as he makes out to his sons. He has a bad self image and does face this reality for a short while as he says, "I'm fat. I'm very foolish to look at," Each time Willy seems to be facing reality he goes from the present to a moment in his past and we can see that this is Willy's way of dealing with his problems rather than face up to any truth and deal with it.
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"Linda: I don't say he's a great man... He's not the finest character that ever lived. But he's a human being... Attention, attention must be finally paid to such a person.
Firstly, Willy Loman is a common man. We know this because he is an ordinary American, with an unremarkable job. Willy can also be associated with many men, living in America, in the 1940's, because of his financial constraints. For example when Linda is listing the amount of money that they owe for their possessions. "Well on the first there's sixteen dollars on the refrigerator." there is symbolism used to show the pressure that Willy feels, this is the sample cases that he carries at the beginning of the play.
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This is partially so that she would not get into any more trouble but also to stop the talk of witchcraft in the town, therefore meanning she began with good intentions. The fact that she did begin with good intentions gives the reader an idea that she did not intend to let the happenings in Salem get that far. During the play she sees an oppurtunity to further her station in the society of the time and to take revenge on the one person who is keeping her from the man she loves: John Proctor.
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To what Extent does the Character of Willy Loman conform to the Conventions of a Classical Tragic Hero?
This skill that Willy has allows him to interact with others and this helps them gain their attentions, Willy also gains respect from this. As Willy is able to talk to people fluently and confidently the audience feel he could do more for himself but he is unaware of this and is only interested in maintaining his pride and the way others see him. The way Arthur Miller has chosen to reflect Willy Loman to the audience of this play shows us the classic conventions of a tragic hero.
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One way of explaining why is Linda a loyal wife is talking about how she supports her husband. Linda does that supporting her husband in doing what he thinks is success for his family. He persecutes to have success doing what society thinks best in life having a good job, earning a lot of money, have a lovely family and also attempts to make his sons, Biff and Happy, into successful people. In this case, Linda tries to make his husband feel good and support him of getting all he persecutes. On the other hand, Linda could be more realistic disagreeing her husband in some aspects and not giving him always the reason.
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'You see how uneasily they nod to me?' In his opening line Mr Alfieri tells the audience directly how he is seen by other characters and the reason they are so uneasy is 'because I am a lawyer', he explains. Mr Alfieri on stage is sat in his office and directly addresses the other character however once they have left he sits himself upon his desk and addresses the audience. In the final piece of the play Mr Alfieri is on the street with the other characters although the other characters appear not to see him, it is as if he is looking at it all through a shaded window.
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The girls at first named three people as the witches; Sarah Good, a beggar, Sarah Osburn, an elderly women and Tituba, the Parris family Slave. This story I have told you was definitely not a fairy-tale, it was a complete nightmare for the whole village of Salem. This started one of the most controversial and horrific convictions and killings of the innocent in the history of the United States. So what would have caused these girls to act in this manner?
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The Puritans could only explain this as the supernatural. After much prodding, the three girls confessed to the women that were causing the behavior: Sarah Good, Sarah Osburn, and the Indian slave, Tituba. By confessing she was a witch, Tituba created a great fear among the Puritans. They embarked upon a mission to find all the witches in the town and its surrounding area. In the trials, according to National Geographic, over 160 people were accused of being witches; 25 of whom were either executed or died in prison ("Epilogue" Internet).
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An investigation carried out ostensibly to uncover subversive activities but actually used to harass and undermine those with differing views. Defamation - a malicious attack. 2: an abusive attack on a person's character or good name. Slander - communication to third parties of false statements about a person that injure the reputation of or deter others from associating with that person. The act of defaming; false or unjustified injury of the good reputation of another, as by slander or libel; calumny.
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Women were especially prone to get damaged reputations from society and they were also subordinate on the hierarchal ladder. The same goes for The Crucible, which is based on the actual Salem witch trials. Puritanism, based on theocracy and power of the church, emphasizes a phrase in chapter twenty-two, verse eighteen of Exodus in the Bible and in the Good News Bible, Today's English Version, it states, "Put to death any woman who practices magic" (78). In a more standard Bible the Puritans used, it says that a witch is not meant to live.
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Alfieri is a middle-aged lawyer, not very into his job this was shown by him saying "my practice is entirely unromantic", he immigrated to America as a young man in search of "The American dream", freedom and wealth. He is very well respected in his neighbourhood; however people do keep their distance from him, as they tend to associate the law with pain and unlawful acts; "A lawyer means the law and in Sicily the law has not been a friendly idea since the Greeks were beaten."
- Word count: 1583
How would you explain the outbreak of witch persecution in New England towards the end of the 17th Century?
No longer was political participation reserved for members of the church, now it was changed to the more English property qualification method. The desire for a godly New England seemed to be slipping away. These social changes endangered the ideology of the predominantly Puritan population in Salem; any alteration to their way of life was feared. The people believed in the Devil as enthusiastically as they believed in God and bad fortune of any type, from children becoming sick to dryness befalling milking-cows, was seen as a sign that the Devil was at work.
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Each flashback is somehow related the present. Very often, the contents of the flashback offer essential background knowledge for understanding why the present-day problems in the Loman family are occurring. For example, when Willy is thinking about Biff and Biff's problems, Willy is transported to the summer of Biff's senior year. The events that took place in the past expose the reader to the situations that have led up to the present-day boiling point in the Loman household.
- Word count: 525
What is it about the society of Salem that allows the girls' stories to be believable? How does Arthur Miller make this plausible and why would it strike a particular chord with his audience?
At the time when Arthur Miller wrote 'the Crucible,' there were current affairs which would have reflected the play. The threat of nuclear warfare was looming, mainly because of differences of opinions over communism. Many people were called to court accused of 'un-American activities' and persecuted if they couldn't prove themselves otherwise. It was a way for the governing people to have a hold over the citizens. People were fleeing their country to escape the persecution they had to endure because of their beliefs. This was similar prior to when the Salem witch trials happened. People were leaving England for America for a new life as serious Christian communities, where they wouldn't be mistreated because of their beliefs.
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The main characters in the play "All My Sons" learn many lessons about responsibility and its different meanings.Joe Keller commits a wide range of irresponsible actions
That's only for you, Chris, the whole shootin' match is for you!" page 16. Joe doesn't face the consequences of his acts all the way through the play. He overlooks the fact that he is responsible for those deaths and lets the judge decide who was guilty for the crime. The one who in the end was blamed for it was Steve, Annie's father that in reality received the order from Joe. Joe tries ignoring the fact that he was the one who allowed those parts to be shipped and that he was the one to be blamed for the death of those pilots.
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Tituba, Tituba with this begins the deceit that makes this whole situation like the swamp that Danforth describes because everything is so unclear and the difference between truth and lies are hard to discern. Tituba is forced into lying due to fear of getting hanged don't hang Tituba I tell him I don't desire to work for him sir. This fear dominates this play. Tituba's confession and Abigail's lie causes people to believe that they would have to lie that someone else is involved in witchcraft in order to save himself or herself.
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Why Did the Salem Witch Hunt Occur Many American colonists brought with them from Europe a notion in witches and an intrigue with alleged manipulation with the devil. During the seventeenth century, people were executed for witchcraft
The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 resulted in nearly 200 people imprisoned, 20 executed and a further 8 dying in prison. Most of the participants knew each other. Either blood or marriage tied some together. This was true of my ancestors, some were victims, others prosecutors and still others the afflicted. The trials came about because of the action of a small group of teenage girls who had spent the winter of 1691-92 at the home of their friends, Elizabeth and Abigail Paris.
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He then goes on to say how in this area lawyers are hated as they represent the law; "A lawyer means the law" this is beginning to show the audience that this play may not be set in the most lawful of places. He tells of how the people in this area, mainly originate from Sicily, "in Sicily, where their fathers came from", and how in Sicily, the law of the land is not respected, "the law has not been a friendly idea since the Greeks were beaten".
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During his time as a dockworker, Miller also heard the story of a longshoreman who had become a social pariah after betraying his family and the Sicilian code when he reported his own relatives to the Immigration Authorities because of a relationship he saw forming between one of the immigrants and his niece. 'A View From The Bridge' is a modern day tragedy because it ends with the death of one of the characters and carries throughout the play a sense of inevitability.
- Word count: 2477