Death of a Salesman


The book Death of a Sales man is a story in which the character Willy plays a big role in. There are causes for Willy’s downfall, which shall be explained in this paper. Willy was angry at his sons Biff and Happy for the way they lived their lives and not living up to his expectations, and he was angry that he lost his job. The first reason why Willy is in a downfall is because he is angry with his son, Biff, for the way he lived his life.


Willy is angry at Biff because he wasn’t living up to his expectations is one reason why he is in a downfall. This is one reason why he is in a downfall; he gets angry at Biff whenever he comes around the house because he is so young and making little money. “...And then the closer you seem to come the more shaky he gets and then..by the time you get here..he’s arguing. He seems angry at you”. This quote relates to the thesis because it tells how Willy reacted around Biff and how he is disappointed in him. Willy’s disappointment in Biff was one reason why Willy was in a downfall. Another reason why he is in a downfall is because not only was he disappointed in Biff, he was disappointed in his other son Happy.


Willy’s disappointment at his other son Happy for not living up to his expectations is another reason why he is in a downfall. This is a second reason why Willy is in a downfall because Happy couldn’t become the businessman like Willy wanted him to be. “..we for two basketball teams, see? Two water polo teams. We play each other. It’s a million dollars worth of publicity…we could sell sporting goods”. This relates to why Willy is in a downfall because this is just an idea that Happy thought of that never ends up working in the end and Happy still has to wait to become the merchandise manager. Willy’s disappointment in his other son, Happy, for not living up to his expectation of being “the man on top” is a second reason why Willy is in a downfall. Another reason for Willy’s downfall was he losing his job.


Willy’s downfall directly relates to the loss of his job. Willy, a well-known businessman, became in need of money when his salary was taken away. The loss of his job also meant a small funeral for him. “..He works for a company for 36 years this march, opens up unheard of territories to their trademark, and now in his old age they take his salary”. This relates to Willy’s downfall because Willy’s pride was being taken away and he lost a lot of respect for himself. For instance, he tried to commit suicide by driving off a bridge, but the shallowness of the water saved him. All 3 of these reasons tell why Willy is in a downfall.


There are causes for Willy’s downfall. Willy’s disappointment in Biff for not matching up to his standards is one reason. Willy’s disappointment in Happy for not matching up to his standards is a second reason. And after Willy lost his job is the third and biggest reason for his downfall. In the end Willy killed himself, even after Biff told him that he really loved him.