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"Death of a salesman - Brief overview of the movie"

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- Willy returns from work and talks with Linda
- the boys discuss their father

- 1. Flashback:
-> Biff borrows ball
-> Willys affair is shown
-> Bernard wants Biff to study
- Charlie offers Willy a job -> declines

- 2. Flashback:

-> fight Biff-Ben
-> Ben tells the story of how he became wealthy
- conversation (Linda+Biff+Happy) about Willy
- discussion with Howard -> Willy is fired

- 3. Flashback:

-> Willy defends his job against Ben
- Willy begs Charlie for some money
- restaurant

- 4. Flashback:
-> Biff meets Willys affair
- hot tempered discussion between Willy and Biff
- Willy commits suicide
- Requiem


- elderly salesman
- works on straight commission
- lost in his hopes
- problems to distinguish between present-past (-> flashbacks)
- infidel
- wants his sons to succeed where he didnt
- cant understand why his sons arent successful

- Willys wife
- wants peace in the family
- tries to protect Willy
- knows about Willys attempts to commit suicide
- wants Willy happy, even though she knows about his affair

- Willys first son
- was once a football star
- didnt graduate
- has different dreams/ideas than his father (a dime a dozen, no great leader of men)
- tried to find himself for 15 years
- wants to work outside (-> Pioneer Spirit)

- low moral character (many different women)
- second son (-> wants attention)
- like Willy he tries for something that wont happen

- Willys neighbour
- voice of reality

- Charlies son
- successful lawyer

- Willys dead brother
- became rich in the diamond mines of Africa
- god-like idol for Willy


- Willy cant see who he and his boys are
- neither Willy nor his sons can be successful
- Willy thinks that well liked = being successful
- flashbacks -> inability to see reality
- Willy thinks that a man is worth more dead than alive
-> Charlie, the voice of reality, negates it

- Willys unable to see changes in the modern era of technology
-> hes always in a race with the junkyard

American Dream:
- Willy lost at trying to live the American Dream
-> used and spent like a piece of fruit

Motifs (elements of a story e.g. symbols, dialogues..):

Woods/Jungle & Diamonds:
- the woods/jungle is a symbol for life ( The woods are burning. I cant drive a car! )
- diamonds are a symbol for success ( You must go into the jungle and fetch a diamond out )

- the garden is a symbol for legacy
- Willy always plays with the idea of planting a garden
-> the grass dont grow anymore, you cant plant a carrot


Three main parts:
- Act I
- Act II
- Requiem
- story starts at present-day
- flashbacks offer background knowledge
A short "guide" which might help you understanding "Death of a salesman" better.
- Storyline
- Characters
- Themes / Conflicts
- Motifs (elements of a story e.g. symbols, dialogues..)
- Structure
(Englisch) (499 Wörter)
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