The Role Of The Father In Arthur Miller's Death Of A Salesman

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The Role of the Father
There is an old saying that goes, "like father, like son." This describes the passing down of personality traits from generation to generation (in this case, father to son) in such a way that the mannerisms of a son almost directly mimic the mannerisms of his father. It is common that most children unknowingly inherit some of their parents ' idiosyncrasies, but it is not always clear why. In Arthur Miller 's Death of a Salesman, the character of Biff, although he is reluctant to admit it, shares many emotional characteristics with his father, Willy. This may be due to the fact that both men have similar relations with and feelings about their fathers, whom they both resented and, at the same time, aimed to please. This causes them to be constantly outraged at each other for different reasons, Biff
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For both, for a while, the idea of being "well-liked" was equivalent to being successful. Willy had always taught Biff that if he had a charismatic personality and a way with words, he would be the most lucrative man on the planet. Biff believed him for a long period of time, becoming one of the most beloved kids in his high school and a football prodigy. Even after the confrontation in Boston, Biff still used this premise throughout his life, trying to "work himself up" after high school with no sense of triumph. This defective idea of perfection is what causes Biff and Willy to constantly attempt to acquire their identities in different forms, all with no such luck. Their ideal pursuits are ones of freedom; Biff was born to work with his hands in the outdoors and Willy was meant to be free of all debts, living in a tranquil environment surrounded by plants and nature. Through this similarity comes the most despair, as the incident with the Woman shatters any hope of either of their dreams

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