Playwright Arthur Miller defines a calamity as “ the effect of a adult male ‘s entire irresistible impulse to measure himself rightly ” ( Tragedy and the Common Man ) . A In Miller ‘s controversial drama, Death of a Salesman, the chief supporter, Willy Loman, serves as an American tragic figure because his ruin is caused by his: deficiency of realisation, false pride, and inability to procure his personal self-respect which overall flickers emotions of katharsis. Bing an idealizer of the American Dream, Willy strives to accomplish his ends through his impression of being well-liked, and by making so he develops a tragic flaw, or tragic defect, of hubris as he attempts to protect his self-respect. However, when he fails to procure his self-respect, he begins to lose his dignity, therefore finally taking to his ruin. Despite being responsible for his ain decease, Willy Loman ‘s calamity emits katharsis, a feeling of commiseration and fright caused by witnessing a tragic decease, within his boy, Biff Loman.
Willy Loman is an ordinary adult male who embodies traditional American values of success, but it is his ideals of being “ well-liked ” that leads to his failure of carry throughing his dreams. For case, after Bernard, a difficult working bookman, pleads Biff to analyze with him to assist him avoid the hazard of neglecting math, Willy takes note of Bernard. To Biff, he remarks, “ Bernard is non good liked, is he? [ He ] can acquire the best Markss in school, but when he gets out in the concern universe, you are traveling to be five times in front of himaˆ¦The adult male who creates personal involvement is the adult male
who gets in front. Be liked and you will ne’er desire ” ( 20-21 ) . Willy grew up believing that popularity is an indispensable portion of being successful. Harmonizing to Willy, Bernard will ever be behind his boy Biff in the concern universe because he is excessively focused on his surveies and faculty members instead than being liked by his equals. Willy continues to reflect back on the delusional yesteryear, and as a consequence he fails to understand that success comes from difficult work and non from personal appeals. However, irony sets for Willy when Bernard ‘s male parent, Charley, tells him “ How make you like this child? Good argue a instance in forepart of the Supreme Court ” ( 73 ) . In the yesteryear, Willy had ever deemed Bernard to be unpopular and therefore believed that he would ne’er go every bit successful as his boy, Biff. It is dry because Biff, who was a popular football star during his high school old ages, had had over 30 occupations and has yet to happen his possible, while Bernard on the other manus, was “ non well-liked ” in his stripling old ages, but is now populating the American Dream by being a attorney. Willy felt that this was unjust because he worked so difficult to gain an honest life and he scolded his boies with the incorrect thoughts in hopes that they would assist do a household bequest.
Throughout the drama, Willy Loman becomes disdainful when he attempts to procure his self-respect. For case, when he discusses how much money he had made with his married woman, Linda, he exaggerates the sum and says “ I did five hundred gross in Providence, and seven hundred in Boston ” ( 22 ) . He lies to Linda chiefly because he does non desire to let down her. His subterranean motivation, nevertheless, is to go something bigger than he already is. His insecurities get the best of him when he lies to do himself experience better. Another illustration is after when Willy ‘s foreman fired him, Charley offers him a occupation, but Willy replies with “ I do n’t desire your blasted occupation! I merely ca n’t work for you, Charley ” ( 75 ) . Despite Willy being idle, it is his hubris which makes him worsen Charley ‘s offer. He is doubtless covetous of Charley because he is successful while he,
himself is non. Willy Loman is distracted by his phantasies of being greater than he truly is that he believes he does non necessitate to work in order to keep the success within the American Dream.
Willy Loman ‘s decease is caused by his loss of self-respect and tragic defect of hubris. When Biff uncovers the truth about Willy ‘s matter with another adult female, he yells at his male parent and says “ You fake! You phony small bogus! You fake! ” ( 95 ) . Willy ‘s manner of procuring his self-respect is to believe extremely of himself and by life in a make-believe universe of success, but when Biff catches him rip offing on Linda, he calls him a hypocrite, which lowers his self-worth and robs him from his self-respect. Willy ‘s inordinate false pride gets the best of him when he turns off from his boy alternatively of confronting world. He pig-headedly refuses to accept his mistakes and admit he is a failure and alternatively he takes his ain life.
As a consequence of Willy Loman being stripped from his self-respect which leads to his decease, a sense of katharsis is induced. Right before Willy ‘s decease, Biff had an statement with his male parent and tells him “ I am non a leader, Willy, and neither are you. You were ne’er anythingaˆ¦.Will you take that bogus dream and fire it before something happens? ” ( 105-106 ) . Biff begins to recognize that his male parent did non cognize himself and that he has been following the incorrect route. By witnessing what Willy has become, Biff has gained a sense of fright as he recognizes that his male parent ‘s advice were merely defective words embodied with his disenchantments. His fright prevents him from going what his male parent wants him to be and learns to merely be himself. At the funeral, Biff negotiations about his male parent. He says: He had the incorrect dreams. All, all, incorrect. He ne’er knew who he was ( 111 ) . Biff feels commiseration for his male parent as he argues that the job with him was that he was urgently seeking to seek for ego individuality. Catharsis in this instance, gives Biff a opportunity to eventually
travel forward with his life instead than sing more instability by following his male parent ‘s words.
In Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller uses Willy Loman to show how a common adult male can go a tragic figure. Like any Grecian calamity, Willy Loman possesses a tragic flaw of hubris, gives off a sense of katharsis as a consequence his decease, and is stripped from the really thing he tried to procure – his self-respect. He becomes excessively consumed with the yesteryear and the phantasies he has of success and refuses to accept world. Willy ‘s obstinacy finally leads him into losing his occupation, insulating himself from everyone, and perpetrating self-destruction. Ultimately, his decease is caused when he takes up for self-evaluation and realizes that he would instead decease than accept the truth.