Books and Movies Reviews

Warped Values

Willy and Biff Loman’s Destructive Relationship in Death of a Salesman
In the play ;Death of a Salesman; by Arthur Miller, numerous examples of a dysfunctional family are illustrated. Many opinions have materialized concerning the significance Willy Loman exuded on his eldest son, Biff. How did Biff go from being a handsome, popular captain of the football team to a transient, insecure kleptomaniac who wanders aimlessly from job to job? Was there an isolated event in his life that changed him so drastically? Was he destined to become a failure because his father was a failure? What caused an abrupt and unforeseen change in such a promising, hopeful young man? In a careful analysis of the play and the principles each character portrayed, it is apparent that the origin of Biff;s tribulations stem from his relationship with his father. Willy Loman;s warped sociological issues he forces on Biff, are the cause of his son;s repeated failures in life.
From an early age, Willy Loman instilled specific beliefs and idealistic values in his son about life and success. As a senior in high school, Biff had a promising future ahead of him. He had scholarships to three different universities. Although Biff excelled athletically, he was failing academically. His friend Bernard offered to tutor him in order to help him pass his math class. Biff missed study sessions with Bernard repeatedly, and made no attempts to improve his grades. Bernard pleaded with him to take the subject seriously. He asked Willy to encourage his son to study.;Don;t be a pest, Bernard! What an anemic!;(1807). With this lackadaisical attitude, Willy demonstrated no concern of his son failing. Rather than encourage his son to study with Bernard, he was more interested in whether or not Bernard was popular. ;…Bernard can get the best marks in school, y;understand, but when he gets out in the business world,

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