All My Sons Essay

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Life is full of many hard decisions that people have to take, often on the spur of the moment. Some we get right others turn horribly wrong. Joe Keller, the tragic hero of Arthur Miller's play All My Sons, was no different. His whole life was dedicated to his family and their well being but all his plans were undone by one fatally flawed decision.

The audience can relate to Joe and feel sympathy for him because he was a good man who did many great things for his family and in the end paid the ultimate price. Towards the end of the play, Joe's son Chris anguishes over the fatally flawed decision made by his father, thus eliciting the sympathy of the audience. However, this is not enough to detract from the audience relating to Joe as a
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Joe doesn't have many bad qualities in him the only times the audience do see such qualities is when he speaks ill of Steve to others like when he says, "I owe him a good kick in the teeth"(Act 2, p47). However, the audience knows he does not really mean these things but only says them to cover up his fatal mistake. So we forgive Joe his mistake because as Plutarch, the Delphic priest, said almost 2000 years ago, "to make no mistakes is not in the power of man " and also because Joe tries to rectify his mistake by offering to give Steve a good job when he gets out of prison and offering to help Steve's children.

Joe has spent his life making many decisions most of which appear to have been good decisions resulting in his family enjoying a comfortable life. The audience admires him for this. Unfortunately, late one night Joe made a hurried decision, which he believed he could get away with. The reasons for his decision comes to light near the end of the play, in Act 2, when he tells Chris why he made that decision, "I'm a business man, a man is in business; a hundred and twenty cracked, you're out of business, you got a process, the process don't work you're out of business; you don't know how to operate, your stuff is no good; they close you up, they tear up your contract what the hell's it to them? You lay forty years into a business and they knock you out in five minutes, what
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