Actually this was and often continues to be the fault of many people. Abandoned by his father and elder brother as a child, Willy gets no guidance in the world. He only knows that he wants to be “liked”, but do not believes in possibility to be liked, which is, obviously, the consequence of the child’s psychological trauma. In his sixty three Willy is a big child who doesn’t know how to communicate with the world. His perception of the world is mythopoetic, which is characteristic with children: he views people as giants and gods. Willy orients himself at legendary images of Ben and Dave Singleman, very symbolic figures, the former being the embodiment of Ben Franklin, the author of the American dream, as noticed by Heyen (1975), the latter pointing to the tragic misunderstanding of Loman, while even the name indicates the loneliness of the eighty-four-year salesman, who had to work at such an advanced age and died at work, being buried by alien people. Willy even compares his sons to Greek Gods Adonis and Heracles. Being unconscious, he is not able to analyze his motives and needs, to understand what he is. He has problems in communication with his wife and children. Frightened and directed by false visions, he is constantly lying to himself and people surrounding him. He has no friends, and envies Charley, the only person offering support in hard times.Loman shares common traits with Lear, indeed. Like the old king, Loman builds his life on wrong worldview, imposed on him by the social system he lives in. Like Lear, Loman finds himself abandoned by the world he believed so much in, and goes mad, his thoughts turning around the same questions of how the world functions, what the human is, what the major values are, why we should suffer and how we can reach happiness. Yet, the differences are striking either. Tragic heroes, like King Lear, were outstanding personalities of their times, while Loman is wretched and miserable, he is “a great lie, a walking emptiness, a breathing delusion”, as William Heyen (1975, p.49) precisely characterizes him. Like other tragic heroes he searchers for meaning in his life, and parts with his life in this search, but unlike old heroes he does not find the meaning. Even his delirium lacks the logic which can be found in Lear’s ravings. While old heroes’ deaths, those of
Aarnes, William (1983). Tragic Form and the Possibility of Meaning in Death of a Salesman. In Arthur Millers Death of a Salesman. Edited by Harold Bloom. Chelsea House. New York. 1988, pp. 95-111.
Heyen, William (1975). Arthur Millers Death of a Salesman and the American Dream. In Arthur Millers Death of a Salesman. Edited by Harold Bloom. Chelsea House. New York. 1988, pp.47-58
Jackson, Esther Merle (1963). Death of a Salesman: Tragic Myth in the Modern Theatre. In Arthur Millers Death of a Salesman. Edited by Harold Bloom. Chelsea House. New York. 1988. pp. 7 -18
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