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Death of a Salesman Essay Topics

Even the most seasoned writers sometimes feel stumped when they need to create something from scratch. They can sit for hours waiting for a worthy idea. Of course, ordinary students are faced with this all the time.

It is important to remember that you should never give up. You can take a couple of good ideas to dig deeper and come up with more creative options. If you’re upset that you can’t come up with an essay topic about Death of a Salesperson, just read our article. We know this happens to the best of us and are ready to support you at this moment.

Below you will find actionable A-level essay writing tips and 10 Death of a Salesman paper topics with detailed commentary. Enjoy!

Three Things You Need to Know Before You Pick a Topic

We sure you’re eager to start writing your essay, but before you choose a topic, make sure you’re aware of the following three things:

Know Your Assignment

Check out the instructions from your professor and make sure you understand what he or she expects from you. Should you write an argumentative essay, book review, analytical paper, etc.? Perhaps your instructor provided you with specific recommendations for choosing a topic? First, it will help you get a good grade, as ignoring the requirements is definitely not the best way. Secondly, you will get a clearer direction, which will make your prep and writing process easier.

Know Your Limits

Don’t think that you should just start typing and finish when you have exhausted all your thoughts. You need to understand your limits, both in word count and deadline.

If you are writing a short essay, you need to critique each sentence. You can’t afford watery text and vague language. On the other hand, if your professor has a longer essay waiting for you, you can work on complex analysis.

Also, make sure that you clearly understand your deadline and have a plan to help you meet it. If you’re going to order the paper online, do it as early as possible. It will save you money, and you’ll also have enough time for proofreading and free revisions (if you need them).

Know if You Need to Do Research

Some types of essays suggest that you just read the piece of literature and write the paper. But sometimes you need to go further and do comprehensive research with sources and evidence. Of course, this will take more time and effort, which means you must be prepared in advance for this.

Once you are sure that these 3 aspects are completely under your control, you can try to choose a theme for your Death of a Salesman essay

10 Death of a Salesman Essay Topics to Write an Interesting Paper

The American Dream 

The American Dream is one of the main themes in many literary works.

The protagonist of the play Death of a Salesman Willy Lohman entrusts a rather modest salary and is forced to pay off loans. He grew up without a father and therefore, cannot instill the correct values ​​in his children. Like any other American, Willy has hopes and dreams for his life. But he still fails to embody them.

By choosing this topic, you can explain how it is penetrated through the play. Try comparing this work with others with similar main themes, such as The Great Gatsby.

The Tragic Hero

Try to look at Willy Loman as a tragic hero. He wants to live better, to have more than he has now, but his ambitions are not enough to make these dreams come true. Willy already has a lot of good, e.g. his family, but he just doesn’t see it. 

Character Analysis

Students often include character analysis as part of a larger essay, such as a literature review. But you can consider it as a single purpose of your paper.

You can analyze both Willy Loman and other characters, such as his children. You can also consider the success and lifestyle of Charlie, Willy’s neighbor. Compare their views on life, approaches to work, family relationships, etc. Read the various sample essays to find out which topics have been discussed enough and which need a fresh look.

Symbolism

The author uses two key symbols in this piece. The seeds represent growth and failure. Diamonds represent material wealth that the protagonist cannot achieve.

Try to take a deeper look at the symbolism and explain how seeds or diamonds demonstrate the aspirations and expectations of the protagonist. You can try to find other symbols to analyze. Write out quotes that support your opinion.

Language and Tone

Another good option is the words and tone chosen by Arthur Miller. Working on the creation of each character, the author gives him or her certain traits. Each character has his own words and tone that shape the personality and affect the entire story.

Setting

The setting affects the characters’ personalities, plot, interactions, and other elements of the story. You can analyze the place where events unfold. What if it wasn’t Brooklyn, but, say, Alaska or the Midwest? How would this affect the life of Willy Loman and his family, their characters, worldviews? The author also uses many contrasting passages whose influence on the play you can explore in your essay.

Conflict

Each story should have a conflict. There some common types that authors use, and you can easily distinguish them. For example, there may be a conflict between character and character, or character vs. technology, etc. Death of a Salesman is filled with different conflicts, and you can find some you like the most. For example, Willy’s internal struggles stand for a conflict of self. There are also conflicts between characters, between characters and society, etc.

The Role of Women

Some literature pieces have vibrant female leading roles. If you’ve already read the Death of a Salesman, you definitely understand this book is not one of them. Willy Loman is married, but his wife is just a stock character. She is a dutiful woman included only to fulfill the setting. 

How do you think, why didn’t the author leave space for powerful female characters? What is the role of women in this play? Can we say that their roles shape prominent characters in the Death of a Salesman?

Family

One of the main plots of the play revolves around the ongoing conflict with his son. Willy Lohman has certain unmet expectations of himself and transfers them to his son. This leads to a lot of conflicts with Biff. Writing an essay, try to analyze their relationships, and explain their nature.

The Definition of Self

Throughout the play, Willy Lohman repeatedly calls himself a failure. He considers himself a poor salesman, father, and husband. It is this self-esteem that has a decisive influence on the decisions that the protagonist makes.

In your paper, you can explain how defining yourself affects the character and fate of not only the character in the play but all people. Do you have any acquaintances who act the same way as Willy? What would you advise them?

Shape Your Ideas Into a Paper

Once you’ve chosen a topic for your paper, be it one from the list above or some other, don’t wait too long before you start writing.

Start by creating an outline of your essay and a first draft. When some ideas come to your mind, write them down immediately and think about how you can implement them in your paper. Don’t worry if the first version doesn’t meet your expectations. You will edit it several times before you get to the desired result. As soon as you have the final draft, start proofreading to find mistakes and get rid of them.

If you don’t feel confident enough to come up with a brilliant paper, or you just don’t have enough time, use the advantages the professional writing and editing services often. You can shape your requirements into one list and send them with your order. It is a good idea to save time and succeed!

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