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What is the purpose of the  requiem in Death of a Salesman?

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riketa | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 22, 2010 at 10:09 PM via web

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What is the purpose of the  requiem in Death of a Salesman?

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M.P. Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 23, 2010 at 1:07 AM (Answer #1)

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A Requiem plays homage to the person who is no more.

Similarly, Willy, and his dream, are no more.

In the Requiem, which happened some days after Willy's funeral, we get the whole picture of what it is like to be a salesman, particularly one like Willy, in a desperate search of the American Dream.

We see this through the character of Charley, who basically states the gist of the whole story: You have to keep dreaming. This is so because, in essence, that is the only way for a salesman to succeed big.

We also see how Willy would be remembered: Barely. His wife wondered why if he had known so many people, so little people showed up at his funeral, and how he was, in essence, a deflated, gone, and forgettable man.


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