Use of Different Cultures in “Death of a Salesman”

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Essay #: 059954
Total text length is 4,893 characters (approximately 3.4 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
Use of Different Cultures in "Death of a Salesman"
John Lahr discussing the use of other races in the Death of a Salesman states, “To replace the Jewish Willy Loman with an African-American is to change something elemental in the nature of the play’s lament” (Lahr). Would the use of different cultures in plays written for whites affect the quality of the play? John Lahr, certainly, thinks that it would affect the overall production of a play and it would be an insult to the African American people. If the use of actors from different cultures were used in the play, The Death of a Salesman, would make the play less successful because the play was written in regards to the American Dream, it would change the humor in the play, and African...
The end:
.....comes from who the actors are created to be.
An African American in the role of Willy Loman is like putting a white person as the famous African American in the film, Color Purple. It simply does not work. Most plays are created with specific characteristics of actors who come from different races or cultures and trying to change the race or culture of the actor does not work. Putting an African American as the primary character of Willy Loman does not work because the play calls for a white Jewish man who is obsessed with his failure in life.
Works Cited
Lahr, John. “Hard Sell – A Black ‘Death of a Salesman.” The New Yorker. 25 May 2009. 30 Apr. 2010. <http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/theatre/2009/05/25/090525crth_theatre_lahr>.