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Death of a Salesman as a tragedy - Book Report/Review Example

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Hamlet, Oedipus, King Lear, Macbeth, and Willy Loman are the characters observed by the critics in the numerous writings devoted to the genre of tragedy. …
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Death of a Salesman as a tragedy
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Death of a Salesman as a tragedy

This is a tragedy of a common man in the modern world, a story about a man from Brooklyn.

This play was awarded by prizes in literature; it combines several literature styles, as surrealism and realism. This is a story of a man that is swallowed up by the world of hypocrisy and fraud. The hero is shy and unlucky: "Suddenly I realize I'm going sixty miles an hour, and I don't remember the last five minutes." (Miller, p. 56)

He is alone in the surrounding world, and even his family doesn't understand his odd behavior. He speaks to the characters from the past that was luckier and friendlier to him, and his sons are disappointed with his behavior. His wife is also unhappy with this, as she understands that he cannot overcome the distinction between the dreams and the real world.
Investigation of this subject demands mentioning the notion of a classic tragedy and its definition, developed by Aristotle. There were four key elements that the writing needed to be defined as the tragedy: "1) noble or impressive characters; 2) the main character's discovery or recognition of a truth or fault in himself ; 3) poetic language; and 4) the ability to arouse and then soothe the audience's pity and fear. " (Kelly, p. 59)Some critics suppose that Death of a Salesman doesn’t meet any of these requirements, or at least, hesitate that all these demands can be applied to the play; the others insist that the play corresponds to these key elements. It is known that Miller was greatly impressed with the Greek tragedies and he wrote much about the impressions after reading of classic Greek tragedies, he wrote that he was attracted to the Greeks due to their “magnificent form, the symmetry.

...
" (Kelly, p. 59)
Some critics suppose that Death of a Salesman doesn't meet any of these requirements, or at least, hesitate that all these demands can be applied to the play; the others insist that the play corresponds to these key elements. It is known that Miller was greatly impressed with the Greek tragedies and he wrote much about the impressions after reading of classic Greek tragedies, he wrote that he was attracted to the Greeks due to their "magnificent form, the symmetry. That form has never left me; I suppose it just got burned in." (qtd in Death of a Salesman: A Tragedy of a Common Man). But, at the same time the author insisted that the time changed, and the world changed as well, and "we no longer live in an era dominated by kings andqueens- and so maybe our definition of tragedy should change, too." (qtd in Death of a Salesman: A Tragedy of a Common Man). Accordingly, the image of a tragic hero in modern tragedy is to be changed, as the tragedy changed during the ages that had passed since the times of Ancient Greece. A tragic hero, as seen by the eyes of Miller, is a person that intends to die for his or her values or ideas, or beliefs, but there are some limitations that shape him as a literature hero and do not allow this happen. This is the essence of the tragedy.
Willy Loman is persistent and passionate, and he has a dream, which is the sense of his living, and he doesn't hesitate to die for it, if it's necessary. There are alternative ways of behavior, another ways in life, but Willie chooses the path that coincides with his inner world, and his intentions, and he isn't concerned if this is the way to success. Here we may ... Read More
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