Humanities 205 Literature and Healing Final Exam
After reading Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman, choose one of the writing prompts below. Write a 5-7 paragraph response for the prompt of your choice. Comprising the major points of your essay, you will deliver a 5-minute oral presentation.
1. Look at Death of a Salesman as a tragedy and the story about the main character’s, Willy Loman, inner fight. Write about how he retreats into his memories to escape real-life problems. Does it have anything to do with his failure to understand his ambitions?
2. “Be liked, and you will never want.” This is related to Willy’s life philosophy, which he passes on to his sons. Are there any reasons to claim that this philosophy does not work? Why? Also, reflect on the same idea circulating in modern society.
3. Look through all the details you can find about the Loman family and analyze their social and financial state. Write an objective opinion on whether Willy’s suicide was the only option for them. What might have caused him to exaggerate the problems they were having? How reasonable was Willy’s despair in the final scenes?
4. What is the main message of Death of a Salesman? Look at and analyze the main themes and characters but focus only on one idea and present persuasive arguments.