Death of a Salesman

How does Ben describe his and Willy's early family life?

Death of a Salesman

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We learn that Willy's mother ied when he was very young. We also learn that his father played the flute, was generous, kind hearted and loved adventure. The family took trips all over the country, and they sell his father's flutes along the way. Ben says his father made more in a week than people made in a lifetime.

WILLY: No, Ben! Please tell about Dad. I want my boys to hear. I want them to know the kind of stock they spring from. All I remember is a man with a big beard, and I was in Mamma’s lap, sitting around a fire, and some kind of high music.

BEN: His flute. He played the flute.

WILLY: Sure, the flute, that’s right!
(New music is heard, a high, rollicking tune.)

BEN: Father was a very great and a very wild-hearted man. We would start in Boston, and he’d toss the whole family into the wagon, and then he’d drive the team right across the country; through Ohio, and Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, and all the Western states. And we’d stop in the towns and sell the flutes that he’d made on the way. Great inventor, Father. With one gadget he made more in a week than a man like you could make in a lifetime.


Death of A Salesman