Competent vs Competitive: Death of a Salesman Essay

598 Words 3 Pages
Nearly everyone has the desire to be successful in their lives, whether it be measured in the amount of wealth a man owns or the accomplishments he has made in his life. Therein lies the most common, the success in a man's profession. There are multiple approaches to this connotation of success where a wide range of techniques can be applied. One might think that the only way to reach a particular level of success is to take on a competitive nature and achieve that coveted position of number 1. However, being competitive does not necessarily insure that a person is ‘successful.’ They must be competent in their field to reach the top spot. An example of these two sides can be found within Arthur Miller’s Death of A Salesman using the …show more content…
Nearly everyone has the desire to be successful in their lives, whether it be measured in the amount of wealth a man owns or the accomplishments he has made in his life. Therein lies the most common, the success in a man's profession. There are multiple approaches to this connotation of success where a wide range of techniques can be applied. One might think that the only way to reach a particular level of success is to take on a competitive nature and achieve that coveted position of number 1. However, being competitive does not necessarily insure that a person is ‘successful.’ They must be competent in their field to reach the top spot. An example of these two sides can be found within Arthur Miller’s Death of A Salesman using the characters Willy and Bernard. Bernard is a secondary character within Death of A Salesman who serves as a foil to Willy. A childhood acquaintance of Willy’s son Biff, Bernard had always worked to ensure that both Biff and himself achieved good grades. Neither Biff nor Willy took this seriously and instead considered Biff’s athletic and business potential to be superior to a nerd. “Willy: Bernard can get the best marks in school, [you understand], but when he gets out in the business world, [you understand], you are going to be five times ahead of him.” (Miller, page 33.) Years later Bernard is a successful lawyer about to testify in front of the supreme court. A down on his luck Willy went to him, asking for the secret to his success. Willy

More about Competent vs Competitive: Death of a Salesman Essay

Open Document