• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss the importance of beliefs and values in Death of a Salesman

Extracts from this document...


Discuss the importance of beliefs and values in "Death of a Salesman" Like real people, fictional characters have beliefs and values that influence what they say and do. In Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, Willy Loman's determination to live up to his "American Dream" and to seek material possessions in a capitalist society only takes his life. ?? The "American Dream" is the idea that any man or woman can make his or her own fortune, despite his or her past. Willy is trying to achieve success through this thought. He dreams of making personal achievement, enjoying popular fame, and getting great wealth through his hard work. He has great expectations of life and any failure in achievement leads to keen disappointment. ...read more.


His beliefs are incompatible with the modern business world. His wholeheartedly faith in the American Dream makes him even harder to face the truth. Willy has been defeated and disillusioned by the American Dream and this leads to his downfall. In addition, Willy has a false view of life. He values legacy and has high hopes in Biff in fulfilling his dream for him. Passing on a legacy would probably be the only meaning of life to Willy. When he finds himself unable to leave Biff an intangible legacy, meaning probably history, and the insurance money being the one and only tangible legacy he can afford, he chose to kill himself. The fact that his father and brother left him with nothing makes him believe that he has a great responsibility in leaving his sons a legacy. ...read more.


Although Willy is never able to attain his ideals, and his life is a massive self-deception, he still retains his hopes. Even as he contemplates suicide he is still hopeful that his insurance money will sort out his family's financial problems. It is definitely a tragic turn of events that Willy gives his life for the very system that failed him. To conclude, Willy's ignorance of realizing that fact that a professional salesman has a life built upon the foundation stone of attitude, knowledge, integrity and industry but not only physical attractiveness, popularity and likeability has led to his downfall. Moreover, it is his twisted view of life, his pride, his unawareness of his desires and his inability to see past the materialistic side of his American dream that leads him to his destructive action. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Languages section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Languages essays

  1. As a person, student and employee I encounter several circumstances each day which test ...

    Once you know your values you should keep your values firm and unwavering. Your friends and environment should not be able to easily change your values, they are your values not theirs. Values change as the world changes, just like people.

  2. Conflict in 'The Death Of A Salesman'

    We learn Willy always had high hopes for Biff, and that the lack of material success of Biff is a big dissapointment for Willy, as Willy always foresaw big things for his eldest son. Another conflict is caused by this feeling between Willy and Biff, as we see Willy's youngest

  1. Christmas - origins, traditions and ideas for making gifts.

    No - I'm not that tacky. Use wide ribbon and tie it around your cabinet doors, just like you would tie a bow around a present. I had lots of compliments the year I did this. * I'm making Christmas curtains for my kitchen. It's usually the room with the least windows, and the room where you can get away with simple curtains.

  2. Death of a Salesman analysis

    He felt that Willy wouldn't be able to do his job right anymore and make the business suffer if he continues. This is such a blow to Willy because now he doesn't have a job. Just for a small request to stay home and work, Willy suffered by overall losing his job.

  1. A Mother's Legacy In Mary Shelley's "Mathilda"

    but both of them seem at a glance to be worlds apart in the world of literature. Wollstonecraft lived in the Age of Enlightenment and her writing and philosophies corresponds to the upcoming revolutionary opinions of philosophers from the same age such as Voltaire and John Stuart Mill.

  2. Death of a Salesman Commentary

    The text also suggests that Charley cares enough for his friend to offer him a job. Willy refuses emphatically as his pride will not allow him to work for his friend; notwithstanding the fact that Charley is frustrated over Willy's delusions and unrealistic dreams.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work