Death of a Salesman Summary and Analysis of II.5

Act 2 (Restaurant, Present Day):

At the dining establishment, Stanley the waiter seats Happy. A lavishly dressed woman gets in and sits at the next table, and Pleased tells Stanley to bring her champagne. Biff gets in as Happy flirts with the girl, who is called Miss Forsythe. Delighted tells Miss Forsythe that Biff is a quarterback with the New York Giants. Happy asks the girl out, and asks her if she can find a friend for Biff. The woman exits, and Happy remarks that women like that are why he can’t get married.

Biff informs Pleased that he did an awful thing. Bill Oliver did not keep in mind Biff, and left when Biff approached him. Biff took his fountain pen, though. Biff insists that they tell their dad tonight to prove that Biff is not lying about his failures simply to spite Willy. Delighted informs him to say that he has a lunch date with Oliver tomorrow and to prolong the charade, because Willy is never ever so pleased as when he is anticipating something. Willy gets here, and tells his boys that he was fired. Although Biff attempts to lie to Willy about his meeting with Oliver, Biff and Willy battle when Willy believes that Biff insulted Bill Oliver. Biff lastly quits, and informs Happy that he can not speak with Willy. As Biff attempts to describe, Willy imagines himself arguing with Young Biff and Young Bernard about Biff stopping working math, and pictures Bernard informing Linda that Biff went to Boston to see Willy. Biff continues to describe what occurred while Willy imagines the lady in the hotel space. Miss Forsythe returns with another lady and Willy leaves. Biff and Pleased argue over who need to do something about their daddy. Happy rejects to the females that Willy is their father.

Analysis:

While Biff’s failures and defects have actually been a major preoccupation throughout the play, this segment demonstrates how damaging Delighted’s character defects can be. A compulsive womanizer, Pleased tells outright lies to the females that he meets, declaring that Biff is a professional athlete, then gets rid of his father in favor of seducing Miss Forsythe. In the final, many cruel move that Happy makes, he denies that Willy is his dad, thus repudiating his daddy even more callously than Biff has done.

Biff, in contrast, merely continues his pattern of silly errors in this sector. While Biff may have started to fail in order to spite his dad, by this point his self-destructive behavior is instilled. His strategy to ask Costs Oliver for money doubted at best, but Biff made it even more not likely by pseudo-accidentally stealing his water fountain pen. In contrast to Pleased, Biff does show some issue for his dad’s sensations; he stresses that Willy will believe that Biff purposefully bungled the conference with Bill Oliver.

The Loman sons’ insistence on framing Biff’s meeting with Costs Oliver in the best possible terms reveals that their true interest in the sporting products service is not for individual gain, but rather to please their father. Biff thinks that he can not inform Willy the fact about his conference with Costs Oliver, because Willy will believe that Biff intentionally undermined the meeting as an affront to him. Biff’s concern is mostly what his daddy considers him and what affect this will have on him; his failure throughout the meeting, with the exception of his humiliation over taking the fountain pen, is hardly a consideration unless it involves how his father will respond to the event. Miller demonstrates that in spite of his weakness, Willy still controls his boys, whose actions are based on how their dad will respond to them.

Willy’s hallucination about Young Biff failing math and visiting him in Boston offers a higher indicator of the reason Biff gathered such animosity towards his father. Willy ties Biff’s visit to Boston with his affair in the same city; the likely fight in between Willy’s life at home as a dad and his life on the roadway as a salesperson seems to provide the motivation for Biff’s spiteful, self-destructive behavior.

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