Instability Lead Life to Its End
The character Willy Loman from the play Death of a Salesman has been read throughout the years with distinct interpretations. Many people have given different reasons to what led to Willys tragic fate. One interpretation I took was that Willys instability in his life led to his death. Some point that led in to my interpretation were his early family life, his relationship with Biff, and his job.
Willys early family life was a difficult one with its many inconsistencies. In Willys early childhood his father left; this left him with many questions about his father and how to be a father. In one scene we see Willy talking to Ben and Willy voices questions and comments about when their father left. Willy asks Where is Dad? and says Dad left when I was such a baby and I never had a chance to talk to him. Willy also voices his concerns about being a father. He says sometimes Im afraid that Im not teaching them the right kind ofBen, how should I teach them? In this early life Willy and his family move around a lot. People and places changed around them fairly swiftly. Another inconsistency in his early family life was his relationship with his brother, Ben. Ben left Willy without looking back. Ben comes in and out of Willys life.
Willys relationship with Biff has its highs and lows throughout the play making it difficult to establish a feel for their feeling towards each other. In the eyes of an early Biff there is nothing but love and devotion towards his father. Even Willy says Biff would go into the jaws of hell for me. This type of affections changes after Biff finds out about his fathers infidelity. Biff loses total respect for his father and calls Willy a liar and a fake. Willy saw early Biff as being a son he could be proud of with all Biffs football victories and successes with girls. As time passes and Biff comes home from the west it is evident that Willy no longer feels pride towards Biff. Biff has no job and wasnt making much money at his last job therefore Willy feels no pride towards Biff. Near the end of the play Willys feelings towards Biff change once again. Willy comes to believe that Biff loves him. Willy starts to says things like that boy is going to be magnificent. Willy was once again feeling love towards Biff.
Willys job causes him extra stresses involving loneliness and money. Willy continually was on the road causing him to have a lack of constant surrounding. We see this with all the people that come in and out of his life and his head. We also see a consequence of this with Willys loneliness. Willy gives the reason for his infidelity as being that he was lonely, terribly lonely. Another repercussion of Willys job was his money problems. At times Willy worked on commission causing extra stress on selling his product.
Towards the end of the Broadway production, we saw a scene where people were rotating around Willy while Willy was also rotating. This scene shows nicely the instability that Willy was going through. Willy Lomans tragic death was in direct consequence to his instabilities.