Thursday, December 12, 2013

Day 80!

Questions pages 94-139
  1. Why doesn’t Willy take the job working for Charley? Why will he take money from him, but not a job offer?
  2. Charley says an important line when he states, “Willy, when’re you gonna realize that them things don’t mean anything? You named him Howard, but you can’t sell that. The only thing you got in this world is what you can sell.” What can you infer from this statement?
  3. At the restaurant, Happy urged Biff not to tell Willy the truth about what happened with Mr. Oliver. Do you think this was the best time for Biff to choose to finally be honest with his father? Why or Why not?
  4. When we first meet Stanley at the restaurant, he demonstrates values that are similar to Happy’s. But, after the boys leave, how does Stanley show that he is superior to Happy
  5. Linda finally blows up and tells the boys she wants them away from the house forever. What are her motives in doing this? Do you agree with her actions?
  6. What ideas, values, or motifs run through these final scenes?
  7. In what ways has Biff changed? Explain the irony which ties the new Biff to causes for Willy’s suicide.
  8. Ben says, “Time!” and it is as though Willy’s time is up. Ben now seems to be purely an extension of Willy, and the two characters blend together. How would this be appropriate?
  9. What is meant by “Requiem”?
  10. Linda points out the lack of people at the funeral. It is at this point that some people consider her to be a truly pathetic figure of a woman. Why might they say that?
  11. Explain one example of irony from the final scene. 
  12. Why do you think Arthur Miller chose a salesman?
  13. How does this play relate to our world and to our lives? What societal values embodied in this play still exist today?
  14. How can we avoid Willy’s lifestyle, values, and problems?How important are an individual’s dreams? Should our dreams influence all aspects of our lives? Explain

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Day 78!

Happy Tuesday!

Today we will begin with our quiz over Act I of Death of a Salesman.

Then, we will check over your quiz and  discuss the questions that you were to answer for today.

AFTER THAT, we will move on to Act II! It's going to continue to be awesome!

Death of a Salesman
Act II pages 71-94 Discussion Questions

When we read the exchange between Willy and Howard, we notice that Howard treats Willy in the same way that Willy treats Linda. Why do you think Miller (the author) developed this parallel relationship? What does it tell us about Willy?
  1. On page 81, Willy gives his speech about Dave Singleman. This speech shows Willy’s motivation for the choices he has made and it shows his value system. Why is this speech so important for the audience to understand Willy?
  2. What does Willy mean when he says that Dave Singleman died “The death of a salesman”? Why is this so important to Willy? Why is this death significant in regards to theme?
  3. What does Willy mean when he says, “You can’t eat the orange and throw away the peel”? Is Willy justified to feel this way? Why or Why not? Do you agree with this sentiment?
  4. How does the mood in this scene differ from the mood in the opening scene in Act I?
  5. In this scene we return to Willy’s past and are reintroduced to Ben. Ben comes to see Will when Willy is at his lowest points; why is this? What does Ben represent to Willy?
  6. At the beginning of this act, Willy says he’d like to buy some seeds to plan in the backyard. Later, when Ben appears in Willy’s imagination, he asks Willy, “What are you building? Lay your hand on it. Where is it?” What is the connection between these lines?
  7. Both Charley and Ben represent everything that Willy wants to attain. Willy sees Ben as an idol, but he treats Charley with distain. Why do you think he treats both of these men differently?
  8. Foreshadowing occurs between Willy and Bernard. Bernard tells Willy that after failing Math, Biff had been all set to go to summer school and retake his exam--but that something happened that killed Biff’s will to succeed. That something, Bernard suspects, happened when Biff went to visit Willy in Boston. What do you think is being foreshadowed?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Day 76!

Happy Friday!

Today, we will continue reading Death of a Salesman. We will read through page 37 and talk about the remaining questions.

Then we will keep moving forward. As we finish through Act I, we will answer the next set of questions:
  1. What do we learn about Willy at the beginning of these pages? Who is The Woman?
  2. Who is Ben? In this scene, Willy bounces back and forth between reality and memories again, based on Willy’s interactions with Ben, what do you think Ben might represent for Willy?
  3. What point is made about the American Dream through Ben’s frequent references to time and to “jungle”?
  4. What does the mock fight with Biff show about Ben’s values?
  5. Do you agree with the way the boys are being raised? Why or Why not?
  6. How are Charley and Ben similar and how do they differ?
  7. What explanation is given for Willy’s confused values?
  8. How does Linda feel about the way her boys live and how they treat their father? 55-57
  9. Unlike the others, Linda faces reality at times. What serious reality does she face in these pages?
  10. What alternative lifestyle does Biff suggest as this scene comes to a close? How does Willy react?
  11. How does Willy now regard Bernard?
  12. What events in the play so far allude to Willy’s ultimate demise? How could this be prevented?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Day 74!

Today is the day we have all waited for! Death of a Salesman project presentation day! Yay!

We will finally get to see the marvelous work you all have been doing over the past several days!

Once we have finished with that, we will begin reading the play! Whoop Whoop!

Our goal is to read pages 11-37 for tomorrow; then we will talk about the following questions.

  1. What are your initial impressions of Willy and Linda? Why?
  2. What conflicts do you see developing in the Loman family? 
  3. What seems to be the problem between Biff and Willy? Are Willy’s feelings justified? If you were Biff or Willy how would you react to this conflict?
  4. Describe the mood/atmosphere of the play so far
  5. Choose three adjectives to describe each character thus far
  6. What are your initial impressions of Biff and Happy?
  7. What conflicts do they face in their lives? Why do you think these conflicts have arisen?
  8. What “flaws” do you detect in their attitudes and personalities?
  9. Do you think Biff’s plan to visit his old boss will prove to be successful for him? Why or Why not? What important background information do we learn in this scene?
  10. Why is being well-liked valued by Willy and his sons?
  11. What is Willy’s relationship like with each of his sons? How does he treat each son? What values does he impart on them?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Day 73!

Good afternoon all!

I apologize for missing class today, and I am sorry if that makes any of you cry.

Today, please finish with any remaining work that you have yet to do on your group presentations. We will give those tomorrow at the beginning of class.

Once you are finished with that, please begin reading your new free reading books! There is a new question on the Reading Workshop Blog. Please take the last 5-10 minutes to answer that question; it is due on Thursday!

Have a good day!