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Extra info for Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller

Example text

It is not easy to visualise Linda but it may help an actress coming new to the part to know that Mildred Dunnock who created it was, in fact, quite slim in build and consequently had to 'pad up' at several successive auditions to achieve what is sometimes called a 'comfortable figure' before she 47 was accepted for the part. Miller gives no physical description of Linda and his note at the beginning of the play is not very helpful. Most often jovial, she has developed an iron repression of her exceptions to Willy's behaviour - she more than loves him, she admires him, as though his mercurial nature, his temper, his massive dreams and little cruelties, served her only as sharp reminders of the turbulent longings within him, longings which she shares but lacks the temperament to utter and follow to their end.

Commentary This very short sequence maintains the emotional tension very well because of the unsolicited kindness of the young waiter and Willy's blind instinctive urge to plant seeds for the future. (At this point, the flow of sequences is halted. ) Act II Sequence 10 Time: Present (night) Location: Brooklyn (house and garden) Summary Biff and Happy return home still slightly under the influence of drink and the excitement of the evening out but also feeling increasingly guilty. They have brought a present of flowers for their mother.

Linda has always believed what he told her, including the unlikely offer of a partnership by Wagner senior. This, quite apart from her dislike of Ben, makes her strongly oppose any suggestion of moving to Alaska. 28 Yet Willy still believes in his philosophy of success through being well-liked and he remembers with pride the glory of Biff's success at Ebbets Field and especially the touchdown by his son. This memory turns sour as he remembers how Charley made unfeeling jokes on what to him was an occasion of solemn splendour.

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