Glengarry Glen Ross Questions and Answers
by David Mamet

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What are some similiarities between Willy Loman from Death of a Salesman and Shelly Levene from Glengarry Glen Ross?

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Shelley "The Machine" Levene, as his nickname suggests, used to be a hot-shot salesman back in the day. But like Willy Loman, his best days are well and truly behind him. Both men have become dinosaurs, unable to compete in the rapidly-changing world of salesmanship. Yet despite all their troubles, they hold fast to the idea that something is bound to turn up and transform their fortunes. The American Dream and all it represents exerts a tenacious hold on these two old has-beens; in fact, one might argue that it's all they have left.

Shelley and Willy pride themselves on being family men, but their delusions have a negative impact on the people they're supposed to care about. Willy's fantasies are passed on to his sons, who like their old man are incapable of getting on in life. As for Shelley, his last-ditch resort to criminality ensures that his sick daughter won't get the health care she so desperately needs.

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Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman and Shelly Levene in David...

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