arthur miller's plays often show how families are destroyed by false values. how does this information add to your understanding of all my sons? give examples from the play.
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Really this is a thematic question dealing with denial and self-deception. How do we deceive ourselves and others? We select things to focus on in life (values), but do we also need to deny certain things in order to live well? What toll does denial take on the psyche, the family, and society? Two main facts about the Keller family history must be confronted. One is Larry's death, and the other is Keller's responsibility for the shipment of defective parts. Mother denies the first while accepting the second, and Keller accepts the first while denying the second. The result is that both characters live in a state of self-deception, willfully ignoring one of the truths so that the family can continue to function in acceptable ways.
The most important "false value" in the play is the love of money and profit that Joe evidences. In all reality the family believes that the defective parts killed many pilots, including Larry; ultimately that leads to Chris wanting his father to go to jail for his crime of shipping defective parts and it leads to Joe's suicide. The family is completely destroyed.