Essay on Death of a Salesman

836 Words 4 Pages
The Dysfunctional Family
In Arthur Miller’s drama, “Death of a Salesman” the protagonist is a sixty-year-old salesperson by the name of Willy Loman. Willy suffers from self-delusion and is obsessed with the desire to succeed. Willy’s actions strongly influence his family, which contributes to their self-delusions. Willy’s wife Linda is an enabler and is codependent upon him. Linda encourages and participates in Willy’s delusions. She is unselfish and her life revolves around Willy and their two boys Biff and Happy. The Lomans are definitely a dysfunctional family due to their lack of communication, respect, and morals.
The basis for any healthy relationship is communication. Communication is something the Lomans do not practice
…show more content…
(Linda simultaneously):…and this woman…Linda: What? Biff: Nothing. Go ahead. Linda: What did you say? Biff: Nothing. I just said what woman?” (Miller 1339). This is a normal conversation in the Loman household interrupting each other, not listening to each other, and lack of interest in what one another are saying.
Lack of respect for each other is another reason why the Lomans are a dysfunctional family. Willy’s lack of respect for his wife is obvious, because he cheats on her during his business trips and thinks nothing of it. When he is caught cheating on Linda by Biff, Willy explains it is because he gets lonely, and while putting his arms around tells Biff him “Now look, Biff, when you grow up you’ll understand about these things. You mustn’t – you mustn’t overemphasize a thing like this” (Miller 1369). Willy does not think there is anything wrong with cheating. He is upset that Biff has found him out if anything. More evidence of the lack of respect existing in the family occurs when Willy meets Happy and Biff at the restaurant on the day of Biff’s meeting with Bill Oliver. Willy starts out by having one of his delusional episodes and goes into the bathroom. Biff and Happy get into an argument about Happy’s apparent disregard for Willy. Biff then storms out of the restaurant. Happy later leaves with two women while Willy is still in the bathroom having a flashback. When one of the women asks Happy about his…