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A Theme of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible

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Introduction

Kyle Blagg Mrs. R. Morrison American Literature/Composition 9 February 2001 A Theme of Arthur Miller's The Crucible The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, is not an accurate historical account, but rather an accurate portrayal of the Salem witch trials of 1692 in Massachusetts. Miller makes minor changes to the events that occurred during the trials such as the genuine names of the victims, the total number of people that were executed, and the correct ages of the characters. During the time of the witch trials, people follow their strict Puritan beliefs. They believe in hard work, prayer, and Bible study, and introspection. Miller tells of how the Salem minister catches several young girls dancing in the forest. This is a sign that the girls are practicing evil, because dancing is not permitted in the Puritan faith. The witch trials were a time of much grief, because many innocent people died without proof and guilt ruined many lives. Miller tells in detail about the witch trials and how the townspeople accept guilt of "witches" without evidence. ...read more.

Middle

Hale believes that justice will be served. During the trials, Hale is trying to identify who are witches and who are not by talking to the townspeople. Hale realizes that the women are beginning to accuse other people in revenge or to save themselves. Once he realizes that everyone is lying about being a witch, he leaves and goes into the wilderness to pray and seek God's guidance. He soon returns to Salem with a change of heart. He previously tried to find the truth, but now he insists that people lie to save themselves from persecution. He tells everyone that life is more important than their personal pride. He begins to accept the responsibility for those that have previously been hung. Miller uses his character John Proctor to represent justice in his work, The Crucible. John Proctor opposes authority in Miller's play. He is portrayed as the protagonist in The Crucible. He acts as an individual and breaks away from established authority. Proctor is a man of great mind and has personal integrity and uses rational thinking. He is often viewed as the voice of reason and does not believe in witchcraft. ...read more.

Conclusion

She was hung because she refused to lie to save herself. Because she was such a strong member of the church she refused to give in to the devils wishes. Miller uses Hale to show that mercy does not always triumph over evil. Hale comes to Salem to distinguish if witchcraft is present within the community. He believes that justice will be served by the courts, but his idea of justice changes at the end of the play. He becomes merciful to the people who were accused and tried to convince them to lie to save themselves. John Proctor is the example that Miller used to show that justice will not always triumph over evil. Proctor was a strong Christian and he felt that he should confess to the affair that he previously had with Abigail. He felt that he should tell the truth to possibly get his wife freed from persecution because he felt she was innocent. Miller shows that the ideals and actions of Rebecca Nurse, Reverend Hale, and John Proctor could not prevail over evil. Miller shows us that goodness, mercy, and justice do not always lead to all of the better things in life. Not all things in life go the way that is planned. ...read more.

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