The following sources agree with the statement that Death of a
Salesman by Arthur Miller is a love story between a father and his
son. In fact, the New York Times maintains that this love story
contributes significantly to the popularity and enduring power of the
play. I have provided three sources below describing the nature of
the love story, which also include a comprehensive plot summary for
"Scholarly analyses of ''Salesman'' have most often focused on its
political consciousness (surely you remember discussing ''tragedy and
the common man'' in high school) or its expressionistic form."
"But these aspects of the drama are secondary to what gives
''Salesman'' its staying power and has allowed it to grip audiences as
far from the United States as Beijing: its almost operatic emotional
sweep in examining one unhappy family and the desperate, mortally
wounded father at its center.
For Mr. Falls and his fiercely engaged cast are, above all, committed
to the work's tragic, conflicted familial love story, between husband
and wife, between father and sons."
"The second and equally important love story in ''Salesman'' is that
of a father and his elder son. And the ambivalent, tentative dance of
courtship and rejection enacted by Mr. Anderson's Biff, who has
returned home after a long, self-imposed exile, and Mr. Dennehy's
Willy is heartbreaking. In his deeply affecting performance, Mr.
Anderson tempers the adolescent rage of a man who has never overcome a
father's betrayal with a more profound sense of conflict: the only way
to win Willy's approval is to give in to his fantasies, and that way
lies self-destruction." (Biff had caught his father having an affair,
which he viewed as betrayal).
"Attention Must Be Paid, Again" by Ben Brantley, the New York Times
(February 11, 1999) http://www.nytimes.com/books/00/11/12/specials/miller-attention.html?oref=login
(free registration required to view article)
"relationship between Willy & Biff (father and son)
(a) Biff is the favorite son, and yet cannot live up to what Willy
wants for him, nor can he really share Willy's ambitions for the
(b) gap of generations between father and son, a gap of ideals and one
which Willy comes to see as the play progresses
(c) Willy is unable to face the fact that Biff will never become a great man
(d) Willy's hopes are so closely associated with Biff that he seems
unable to remember for long that Biff is a mature man, supposedly
capable of making his own decisions. "
"also celebrates humanity and the love between father and son. "
"Death of a Salesman" RevisionNotes.Co.Uk (2003)
"Biff Loman- Willy's eldest son for whom he had dreams of greatness"
This source also has a comprehensive plot summary for the play.
"Death of a Salesman" Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District
Search terms: death of a salesman love story