death of a salesman paper for Pro. myers englishII

death of a salesman paper for Pro. myers englishII - Death...

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Death of a Salesman: Critics Perspeetive Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman is a 1949 play regarded by many critics as a classic American play. Viewed by many as an attack on the American Dream of achieving wealth and success without any principle, Death of a Salesman made both Arthur Miller and the character Willy Loman household names in not only America, but anywhere in the world. Critics have used Death of a Salesman to discuss topics not only related to the business world, but everyday life for the everyday individual. According to Brenda Murphy, Willy Loman and Death of a Salesmen have been used to show the status of a businessman and his life in, not only America, but in the entire world (1). As Murphy states, “Willy Loman and his failure and death have a status as defining cultural phenomena, both inside and outside America’s borders”(2). According to Murphy, within 12 months of the play being released, Miller received thousands of letters telling of how the play impacted and related to reader’s everyday lives (2). Murphy states that “A number of sermons, both spiritual and secular, had been preached on the text of the play, with ministers, rabbis, and priests explaining its exposure of the emptiness of Willy’s dreams of material success.…”(2). In the after years of the play, Willy Loman was seen as the icon of the business culture. But with this came the reaction of the actual business corporations. Their main goals was to take away this image of the dying salesmen and instead bring light back to it. Columbia Pictures wanted to show a short film before playing the actual Death of a Salesmen movie. This film was intended to explain how Willy Loman was just a small percentage of what a
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businessman’s life is. But the short film was pulled before it was ever released. In the words of Murphy, “Only when Miller threatened to sue did Columbia withdraw the short film”(2). In the 1960’s, many businessmen wanted to get rid of the Willy Loman image of salesmen, yet very few college students were willing to have career in selling. Many big business executives blamed the fall of the salesmen on Arthur Miller. As Murphy states, “Willy’s image remained the publics clearest vision of the salesmen.”(2). Many efforts by big corporations, such as CBS, tried to get rid of the Willly Loman image. According to Murphy, CBS wanted to make another version of Arthur’s play for TV and change the script so it would depict a better example of salesmen. They would even change the title to “Life of a Salesmen.” As Murphy states, “the effort to expunge the image of Willy Loman from the publics view of the salesman continued without much success, despite the continually improving material circumstances of the typical salesmen….”(3).
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This essay was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course ENGLISH 1302 taught by Professor Nancymyers during the Fall '07 term at Tarrant County.

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death of a salesman paper for Pro. myers englishII - Death...

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