Here is an article originally published in the Spring of in Spectrum, a magazine for Christian teachers. A colleague by the name of Dr. David Barratt responded and I was asked to briefly reply in the following issue of Spectrum. The Crucible and the Classroom:
The teenage girls who comprise the low social rank who come to power are surprisingly one-dimensional, seemingly driven only by their feelings.
Miller simply wants to portray them as people who are motivated solely by their own selfish gain. However, at the same time, it underlines the fact that people during the McCarthy era were only interested in benefitting themselves, and had no regard for the consequences of their actions.
The prime example of this is Abigail Williams, a main character in the play.
She resents Elizabeth Proctor, convinced she is the only thing keeping her apart from John Proctor, with whom she had a secret affair1. In fact, the events in the play are all set in motion by this hatred, as she persuades Tituba to engage in the practice of witchcraft with her and her friends and, after being discovered and accused, realizes that blaming different people of practicing witchcraft can effectively remove them from society, as this is basically a death sentence.
Mary Warren serves as a counterpoint to Abigail. Although she causes a lot of harm and sends people to their deaths as well, she does not do so out of malice, but rather because of her weak and subservient nature.
She is convinced by Abigail to participate in accusing people of practicing witchcraft, but feels guilty for causing their deaths. When Proctor is furious over the arrest of his wife, she agrees to confess to lying about her accusations, however revokes her confession when Abigail accuses Proctor of witchcraft.
Mary always sides with the stronger power, too timid to oppose it, thereby both representing the weak-willed people of Salem and symbolizing the McCarthy era. Lastly, Tituba is part of an even lower social rank than Abigail and her friends, as she is a house slave.
Although she admits to practicing witchcraft, her fate is never revealed. This ambiguity over what happens to her emphasizes that whether these girls are witches or not is not actually important.
When analyzing all major female characters, it becomes clear that Miller portrays women as behaving rashly and irrationally when they are in a powerful position.
Abigail Williams uses it to eliminate enemies, only to attain the love of a man, while Ann Putnam paranoidly accuses people of witchcraft to explain the deaths of her unborn children.
Worst of all is Mary Warren, who is so gutless and unable to think for herself, that she just bends to the strongest will. How to cite this page Choose cite format:Nov 05, · The movie does indeed give a real life adaptation of the events of the witch trials and does a great job at bringing to life the real characters of Sarah Good, Elizabeth and John Proctor, Goody Osborn, Giles Corey and the kaja-net.com Rating: % positive.
The Crucible by Arthur Miller – John Proctor We have essays on the following topics that may be of interest to you The Crucible (), John Proctor (), Mary Warren (), Tragic hero (63).
The Crucible - John Proctor Essay. My name is John Proctor, I am the husband of Elizabeth Proctor and he father of my three boys - The Crucible - John Proctor Essay introduction. I am Christian yet feel dissatisfied with the way Rev. Parris runs our church. The Crucible Character Analysis (John Proctor) Essay Sample.
Imagine living a life of paranoia, in which you cannot even walk out of the front door without having to peer over your shoulder, wondering if or when you will be struck by an inevitable plague.
Apr 19, · Act one: 1.“Abby, I may think of you softly from time to time.
But I will cut of my hand before I ever reach for you again. Wipe it out of mind. When Arthur Miller's play The Crucible was first staged in , it was widely acclaimed as a metaphor for the recklessness of Joseph McCarthy and his spurious crusade against communism%(60).