Essay: Fear of the Unknown in Death of a Salesman
Willy’s fear of rejection because of his dwindling sales results to his delusional state. He fears the present so much that he settles to living his life in the past. His whole existence evolves around flashbacks which take him back to the successful days, when his children were doing great things in school and also when great opportunities came his way and he rejected them. In fact, we come across his son Biff trying to bring him back to reality as they argue.
He says to him, “I am not a leader of men, Willy, and neither are you. You were never anything but a hardworking drummer who landed in the ash can like all the rest of them! I am one dollar an hour, Willy! I tried seven states and could not raise it. A buck an hour! Do you gather my meaning? I am not bringing home any prizes any more, and you are going to stop waiting for me to bring them home!” as noted by Kennedy and Dana (Pp, 1297). This depicts how Willy starts to see himself as a failure both in business and in parenting as also the grades of Biff his favorite son starts deteriorating, he refuses to attend summer school and works as a menial laborer in a farm. However, his other son Happy is successful and Willy does not pay any attention to him.