Death of a Salesman Author:Arthur Miller Arthur Miller's 1949 Death of a Salesman has sold 11 million copies, and Willy Loman didn't make all those sales on a smile and a shoeshine. This play is the genuine article--it's got the goods on the human condition, all packed into a day in the life of one self-deluded, self-promoting, self-defeating soul. It's a sturdy bridge between kitchen-... more »sink realism and spectral abstraction, the facts of particular hard times and universal themes. Willy is closely based on the playwright's sad, absurd salesman uncle, Manny. But of course Miller made Manny into Everyman, and gave him the name of the crime commissioner Lohmann in Fritz Lang's angst-ridden 1932 Nazi parable, The Testament of Dr. Mabuse.
For this edition the author has rewritten and expanded the initial description and many of the stage directions. He has done this to make it easier for the reader to visualize the settings and transitions and to endow those portions of the play--which need be only technical in a theatrical play-script--with emotional content for the reader. Not a word of dialogue has been altered.« less