Essay about Comparing the Plays, A Raisin in the Sun and Death of a Salesman

In history there have been an uncountable amount of plays made, but there have only been two that fully captured the American dream like A Raisin in the sun and Death of a Salesman. In both plays the protagonist is trying to achieve the American dream, but it is near impossible when neither of them has the respect of their superiors or the people around them. It is amazing that two different plays can so closely parallel each other when they have a time gap of over 10 years.

Both Miller and Lorraine created a theme of achieving goals, Willy Loman just wanted to earn the respect of the people around him while Walter Younger wanted to get rich quick and support his family. American politician Reubin Askew once said, “We must stop talking about the American dream and start listening to the dreams of Americans.” What this means is people like Willy Loman and Walter Younger like to talk about the American dream and how it is their right, but they won’t go anywhere unless they actually go out and follow their own dreams. “Yes, [he is] a fine man—just couldn’t never catch up with his dreams that’s all.” (30). Both Willy and Walter think they have it all figured out, but they are sadly mistaken. Willy believes that to succeed in life all you need to do is be well liked, but all it got him was a lack of respect from coworkers even younger than he. Walter was sure he had found the answer to his families problems by investing in a liquor store; as a result one of his co investors and alleged friend ran off with all the money Walter had invested. Both Walter and Willy have the idea that all of the pressure in on their shoulders and no one else understands what its like. “Man, I’m a volcano, a giant surrounded by ants. Ants can’t understand …

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Although Death of a Salesman and A Raisin in the sun has so much in common they do have a few distinctions. The majority of the major distensions in the two plays appear towards the end, or in other words the outcome. In A Raisin in the Sun the Younger family achieves their goals, Walter becomes the man of the house by standing up to Mr. Lindner, and the Younger family gets to move in to their new house. The Loman family was not so lucky; sadly Willy Loman was eventually successful in his suicide attempt and he did not achieve in reaching his goals. A Raisin in the Sun’s ending was much more positive than Death of a Salesman. The Youngers for the most part achieved their goals but the Lomans did not, the boys wanted to start a business but they could not reach their fathers expectations. Willy wanted to find happiness but ended up committing suicide.

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