Death of a Salesman: 50th Anniversary Edition

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Death of a Salesman: 50th Anniversary Edition

by Arthur Miller

Penguin Books Of Canada, Limited | February 8, 1999 | Hardcover

Death of a Salesman: 50th Anniversary Edition is rated 3.6667 out of 5 by 3.
All his life Willy Loman has been a travelling salesman, who made a decent living--but not more. Dreams and evasions have kept him from seeing himself as he is. He has learned the American go-getter philosophy by heart, and passed it on to his sons, to their undoing. And then, at sixty-three, finally forced to face reality, Willy turns away, down the only road open to him. Out of this simple human situation, Arthur Miller has fashioned one of the greatest dramas of our time. Death of a Salesman opened at Broadway's Morosco Theatre on February 10, 1949. Under the direction of Elia Kazan, Lee J. Cobb brought Willy Loman to life in a now-legendary production. Instantly acclaimed a modern classic, the play took New York by storm. Within a week tickets had to be printed for performances a year in advance. Now, fifty years after its New York debut, Death of a Salesman is back on Broadway, and Arthur Miller's masterpiece continues to thrive--not only as a permanent contribution to our national literature, but as a moving and vital ongoing presence on the American stage today. WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE WINNER OF THE DRAMA CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD

Format: Hardcover

Published: February 8, 1999

Publisher: Penguin Books Of Canada, Limited

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0140285652

ISBN - 13: 9780140285659

Found in: Classics, Entertainment

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Reviews

Rated 3 out of 5 by from Chasing the American Dream I read this for my English summer school class and I really enjoyed the play! The time period that the book takes place in is around the late 1940s/ early 1950s and focuses on Willy Loman, a traveling salesman who is now in his sixties in a career that is going nowhere. All his life, he has believed in the American Dream and that one day he could succeed in achieving it, but he refuses to believe that it's just not going to happen. He still believes he can be successful even though he has a dysfunctional family he can barely provide for and is forced to borrow money from his only friend. His outlook on life and in business is that people become successful by being well-liked (appearances) and that no one cared if you were smart or skilled. It's a lesson that he instilled in his children and now they're all paying the price by leading unfilled lives. In particular, Willy can't understand why his favoured son Biff isn't successful in life as he thought his son would achieve greatness. The play redefines the definition of the tragic hero as the play switches from the present to the past, where Willy tries to find where it all went wrong.
Date published: 2009-07-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A tragedy of a low man Death Of A Salesman by Arthur Miller was written in 1949 and changed what tragedy meant. Instead of the usual fall of a man in a high position, it was about Willy Loman, a small man. The play is centered on conversation that is mostly dull. The most interesting part of it is seeing the wrong beliefs of Willy that he instils in his two boys, Biff and Happy, which greatly affect their lives in the future. Willy's interpretation of manliness and the American Dream are also the features that make this play great. Willy Loman, 60, has been working as a salesman for many years. The company that he has been working for has taken him off a salary and placed him on commission. He hasn’t been able to sell anything and is resorting to borrowing money from his only friend. His two children, Biff and Happy, are unable to help Willy pay for his mortgage and expenses. Willy feels that it his duty to provide for his family, and being unable to do so lowers his manliness. What has happened to Biff and Happy that has made them as they are as adults? How will Willy, who is seeing hallucinations, react to his loss of manliness? How did growing up without a father or brother affect Willy? What are Willy’s motives for what he does? Does Willy’s belief in success as a result of being well-liked work? What dreams do the two brothers choose to follow in the end? What does ‘free’ mean in the ending? 3/5
Date published: 2009-05-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great American Tragedy This play revolves around the lives of Willy Loman, who is an aging salesman, his wife Linda, and his two sons, Biff & Happy. Arthur Miller's story grips the reader and puts forth many ideas about modern society's moral decline. It is an interesting read, and is still today's Great American Tragedy.
Date published: 2001-01-19

– More About This Product –

Death of a Salesman: 50th Anniversary Edition

by Arthur Miller

Format: Hardcover

Published: February 8, 1999

Publisher: Penguin Books Of Canada, Limited

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0140285652

ISBN - 13: 9780140285659

From the Publisher

All his life Willy Loman has been a travelling salesman, who made a decent living--but not more. Dreams and evasions have kept him from seeing himself as he is. He has learned the American go-getter philosophy by heart, and passed it on to his sons, to their undoing. And then, at sixty-three, finally forced to face reality, Willy turns away, down the only road open to him. Out of this simple human situation, Arthur Miller has fashioned one of the greatest dramas of our time. Death of a Salesman opened at Broadway's Morosco Theatre on February 10, 1949. Under the direction of Elia Kazan, Lee J. Cobb brought Willy Loman to life in a now-legendary production. Instantly acclaimed a modern classic, the play took New York by storm. Within a week tickets had to be printed for performances a year in advance. Now, fifty years after its New York debut, Death of a Salesman is back on Broadway, and Arthur Miller's masterpiece continues to thrive--not only as a permanent contribution to our national literature, but as a moving and vital ongoing presence on the American stage today. WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE WINNER OF THE DRAMA CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD

About the Author

The son of a well-to-do New York Jewish family, Miller graduated from high school and then went to work in a warehouse. His plays have been called "political," but he considers the areas of literature and politics to be quite separate and has said, "The only sure and valid aim---speaking of art as a weapon---is the humanizing of man." The recurring theme of all his plays is the relationship between a man's identity and the image that society demands of him. After two years, he entered the University of Michigan, where he soon started writing plays. All My Sons (1947), a Broadway success that won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award in 1947, tells the story of a son, home from the war, who learns that his brother's death was due to defective airplane parts turned out by their profiteering father. Death of a Salesman (1949), Miller's experimental yet classical American tragedy, received both the Pulitzer Prize and the New York Drama Critics Circle Award in 1949. It is a poignant statement of a man facing himself and his failure. In The Crucible (1953), a play about bigotry in the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692, Miller brings into focus the social tragedy of a society gone mad, as well as the agony of a heroic individual. The play was generally considered to be a comment on the McCarthyism of its time. Miller himself appeared before the Congressional Un-American Activities Committee and steadfastly refused to involve his friends and associates when questioned about them. His
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