Death of a Salesman
Act I, Part 1
1. In what city does Willy Loman live?
2. What surrounds Willy’s house?
3. In what way has Miller used transparent walls to indicate when characters are in the past rather than the present?
4. What is Willy’s job?
5. From where has Willy returned early? Why?
6. Does Willy have confidence in his ability to do his own job?
7. Who has come home to visit Willy and Linda?
8. Whom does Willy criticize and why?
9. Why does Willy stop his criticizing?
10. Who begins to listen to Willy and Linda’s conversation just before Willy goes to the kitchen to make a sandwich?
Act I, Part 2
1. How old are Biff and Hap during their conversation in the bedroom? Does that conversation take place in the past or the present?
2. What was Biff’s latest job? What kind of job or career can he not bear?
3. Why doesn’t Hap accept Biff’s invitation to go West to start a farm?
4. In what kind of unethical behavior has Hap engaged?
5. What plan does Biff tell Hap about as the brothers fall back asleep? Why is Biff somewhat nervous about the plan?
6. How does the audience know that a flashback occurs?
7. Is Willy bashful or shy about his ability as a salesman?
8. How are Biff and Hap different from Bernard?
9. According to Willy, what makes someone successful?
10. How might the flashback affect what you think of the Biff and Hap in the present?
Act I, Part 3
1. What do we learn about Willy’s ability as a salesman as this section of the play begins?
2. Does Willy ever doubt that he is attractive and well liked?
3. What memory or daydream does Willy have immediately after he tells Linda, “You’re the best there is”?
4. What gift does Willy not give to Linda, even though he does give it to someone else?
5. Why does Willy scream at Linda and Bernard to “Shut up!”?
6. Do Willy and Charley play cards in the present or in the past of a flashback?
7. Who is Ben and why does Willy admire him?...