Hard Cover. New York: The Viking Press, 1949. 1st Edition. Near Fine / Dust Jacket Included.
First edition, first issue. Publisher's orange cloth, with an illustration of the play's stage setting and the spine lettering in brown, pictorial endpapers illustrated with a reproduced drawing of the play's stage setting by the play's original set designer Jo Mielziner; original first issue dust jacket with illustration of the protagonist Willy Loman designed by Joseph Hirsch. A near fine or better copy, with a hint of wear to the extremities, extremely faint toning to the spine, bright and fresh interior; unclipped dust jacket, with some light wear and rubbing to the extremities, minor chipping to the spine ends, a few light smudges to the rear panel, otherwise clean and bright panels. Overall, an attractive, tight copy. Death of a Salesman is Miller's best known play, about Willy Loman, an aging traveling salesman who struggles financially and emotionally after losing his job. The plot was largely influenced by Miller's own experience as part of a prosperous immigrant family who achieved the American Dream only to be later devastated by the Great Depression. The story is told in stream-of-consciousness style, with Loman drifting between the reality of his shabby apartment and the idyllic memories of a more prosperous yesteryear. This literary technique is achieved in the theater setting through Loman's conversation with characters who exist only his imagination, as indicated by the play's half-title. Death of a Salesman debuted on Broadway at the Morosco Theatre in New York on February 10, 1949, starring Lee J. Cobb as Willy Loman and under the direction of Elia Kazan. A literary and theatrical success, Death of a Salesman won both the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the Tony Award for Best Play in 1949.