The definition of the American Dream is an of import subject that is woven throughout the attitudes and actions of Arthur Miller’s characters in his drama The Death of A Salesman. Happy Loman. a character dominated by his stuff greed and desire to oppress anyone standing between him and the all-powerful dollar. represents a skewed position of that Dream. a position shared by an progressively big sum of Americans. Through his insatiate appetency for power. lecherousness. and wealth. Happy Loman embodies the modern capitalist American Dream. And through his ceaseless discontent and ceaseless feeling of unfulfillment. Happy besides embodies the false belief and defects of that Dream.
One could see Happy Loman to be a success. He may non be the president of his company ( in fact he is one of two helpers to an adjunct purchaser ) . but at approximately 30 old ages of age. he has a steady occupation and a topographic point of his ain. And he’s traveling up in the universe. he’s acquiring someplace. And there’s nil incorrect with this. American society and capitalist economy in general is based on the Puritan individualist work moral principle. which states that difficult work strains success and felicity.
But Happy isn’t wining because he works hard. because he’s good liked. or because he’s exceptionally good at what he does. He’s wining through the neo-American cutoff to happiness. the modern American Dream. which encourages cut-throat competition at every degree. Happy. much like 1000000s of other Americans. is traveling up in the universe by get the better ofing his competition. by destructing all of those in his manner. On page 23 and 24. he says. “All I can make now is delay for the ware director to die”¦He’s a good friend of mine. ” Happy desires more money. more power. and more duty strongly plenty that he is willing to lose a good friend of his. merely to acquire his occupation.
His occupation. Not a occupation. Another ground why Happy symbolizes the new American Dream is his compulsion with destroying the lives of others in order to better himself. “I don’t cognize what gets into me. possibly I merely have an overdeveloped sense of competition or something”¦” he says on page 25. Happy can acquire any adult female he wants. Yet he intentionally chooses to kip with the married womans and fiancA©es of his colleagues and foremans as a manner of get the better ofing them in some nonexistent competition for power. Therefore. despite the fact that they may be in front of him in the concern universe. Happy can happen consolation in the fact that he “went and ruined” his bosses’ partners. “Isn’t that a crummy feature? ” he asks Biff. Of class it is. but it doesn’t halt Happy from making it over and over.
Happy may stand for the quintessential American in the facets mentioned above. but what truly cements his place as the prototype of the neo-capitalist is his pervading feelings of sadness and discontent. When Happy speaks of perchance going the new ware director. he says that he would make the same thing that the old ware director did: construct a sign of the zodiac of a house for himself. so sell in in two months. He says on page 23. “It’s crazy”¦it’s what I ever wanted. My ain flat. a auto. and plentifulness of adult females. ” Yet when Biff asks if he is content. Happy rejoinders. “Hell no! ” . When speech production of adult females. whom Happy appears to be improbably fond of. he says. “I keep knockin’ mutton quad over. and it doesn’t average anything. ” And why is Happy discontent? Because he defined the American Dream. his American Dream. in footings of money and power. alternatively of felicity and self-actualization. He will ne’er be content. and neither will anyone else who portions his Dream.
When ends are determined in denominations of currency. so they can ne’er be reached. because no 1 can possess all the money that exists in the universe. What’s better than a Toyota? A Lexus. What’s better than a Lexus? A Ferrari. What’s better than a Ferrari? A ground-effect machine? A yacht? 2 yachts? A goddamn jumbo jet? It ne’er ends. And therefore. the American Dream can be crushed under the weight of a dollar measure when it is improperly defined. The Dream becomes travesty. a carbon black. a fraud. an old wives’ narrative. an urban fable. an orange that consists of nil but the Peel. a individual whose psyche. whose encephalons have been sucked out of his olfactory organ by small foreigners have oning wing-tipped places. transporting attachA© instances. and driving ground-effect machines with the future married womans of their foremans in the rider place. But it doesn’t have to.