The Deplorable Life of Willy Loman

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For those of you that don’ t know what deplorable means then you need to check out the tragic play “Death of a Salesman”, by the American writer, Arthur Miller. The main character of this story is Willy Loman, who is almost the walking definition of this word. The life of Willy Loman is portrayed as a tragic existence for these few reasons; he was a ghastly role model for his sons, a inconsiderate and unfaithful husband, he allowed one incident to affect the rest of his life, and finally, he killed himself, when he still had so much to live for.

First of all, Willy was a dire role model for his two sons Biff and Happy. He was a loving and giving father, but he always treated Biff better than he did Happy. Biff was the all-star quarterback and everyone in the city loved and admired him.Willy was no different, he always put Biff before anyone else in his household, which is something that a father should never do to his family. Willy’s love for his sons was very apparent, however he set in them very low moral values. For example, Willy told Biff and Happy to run up the street and steal some sand to finish some steps, which tells them that stealing is OK. This is a trait set in him by his father, which proves to haunt him his entire life. Willy was also a cheat, whether it was adultery or simple card cheat, his dishonesties certainly rubbed off on his children, and proved to be the downfall in their lives.

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On the other hand, Willy affected more than just his sons life with his deceit. He greatly altered his own when he was caught in the mist of an affair with a meaningless prostitute, by his beloved son Biff. This event proved to be the turning point in these two individuals lives. Willy’s wife Linda, was a great women who certainly didn’t deserve the heartache and disrespect that Willy gave her. For instance, on many occasions in the story Willy is talking to his sons, and Linda will simply try to state something until Willy orders her to, “shut up.” This unfaithfulness and disrespect to his mother is what proves to drive Biff away from his dream of football and his father whom he so dearly loved.

Consequently, Biff dropped out of school and ruined his sparkling future in football. So, as time past on, the boy that everyone just new was going to be something special seemed to be casting it all away. This realization was to much for Willy to handle. So instead of accepting the harsh facts that his extraordinary son was “a dime a dozen”, he chose to live his life in the past. He decided to live off of memories of the time when Biff was still in the spotlight and he was his best friend. These memories would cause Willy to slip into a dream state, where he talks to himself and more times than not talking to Biff. He also has this hallucination of his dead brother Ben coming back and talking to him. This sort of denial to real life causes Willy be more unsuccessful than before as a salesman and a liability on the roads. In due course, he was unable to fulfill his job as a traveling salesman, so after thirty-four years he was fired. This incident left Willy feeling worthless and ashamed of himself.

As a result, Willy decides to follow his brother Ben, not to Africa or Alaska but to the thereafter. So he deliberately wrecks the car and kills himself, in hopes of leaving Biff twenty thousand dollars from a life insurance policy, about which he tells Ben, “can you imagine that magnificence with twenty thousand dollars in his pocket?” Willy says this a few seconds before he walks out the door. Nonetheless, Biff never did get any money because insurance doesn’t pay in the case of a suicide, so Willy’s death was completely in vain.The day of Willy’s funeral, Linda finally made the last payment on their house, so they were completely free of debt, therefore they really didn’t need any money. So all he really did was leave alone one grieving widow and two heartbroken sons.

In conclusion, Willy Loman was a sad man who’s only dream was burned in front of his eyes and held to haunt him the rest of his life. He was a loving but horrible father and unfaithful husband, who in the end only measured himself and his family up to what they had become and seeing no reason to go on took the easy way out and killed himself. If only Willy had accepted what he had and was grateful for that, the entire Loman family would have been much better off.

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The Deplorable Life of Willy Loman. (2019, Jan 27). Retrieved from

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