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Briefly describe the trial scene from The Crucible.

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Introduction

Briefly describe the trial scene. The entire town of Maycomb is excited about the trial. However, this excludes the prejudice less people like Miss Maudie who doesn't want to see someone on a trial for his life. She considers it like a Roman Carnival. On the day of the trial, a vast crowd camps in the town square to eat lunch. They all have gathered to witness the incident that is about to take place. Jem, Scout and Dill also have come to see the trial. When the crowd starts to enter the courthouse, the children take this opportunity to their advantage to slip into the courtroom without Atticus noticing. They succeed in getting seats in the black balcony. The Finch children along with Dill are welcomed there. From the conversation of the people below them, Scout finds out that Atticus was actually appointed to defend Tom Robinson. It was the impartial Judge Taylor who appointed Atticus. The trial begins with the prosecutor Mr. Gilmer questioning Heck Tate, the sheriff. He asks Mr. Heck Tate to recall his encounter, on the night of November twenty first. Mr. Tate explains that Bob Ewell urged him to go to his house as "some nigger'd reaped his girl". ...read more.

Middle

However, since she slips it out, she has to lie to Atticus's question that her "paw's never touched a hair o'" her head. She is lying, obviously because she is scared to get beaten up. Atticus cross examines her testimony and asks her why she didn't put up a fight; why her screams didn't bring the other children and more importantly, how Tom managed to create all the bruises on the right side of the face when he was crippled in the left hand. When her lies were exposed by Atticus, she finds that she has betrayed herself and this hurts her. Although she cannot be forgiven for this vicious lies, both Atticus and Scout feels sympathy for her, because they know that she is a victim of her father's cruelty. There is good in Mayella but her actions seem motivated by cowardice. Her critical reluctance to say Tom's name when asked who her rapist was, points towards her hesitancy to accuse him when he is innocent. However, she surrenders to fear and accuse him, thus putting her fear over the value of his life. Mr. Gilmer rests his case and Atticus calls Tom to the stand. Tom Robinson, a twenty five year, had earlier received thirty days for disorderly conduct. ...read more.

Conclusion

Atticus also outlines that Mayella had actually committed a crime. Mayella's crime, Atticus argues, was to tempt a black man and she could not allow Tom to continue walking past her property everyday as a "daily reminder of what she did". Atticus pleads with the jury to consider the parties involved as equals under the law. His case and his closing argument are very strong. Calpurnia comes to the court to fetch the children. Atticus finally realizes that they have been watching the entire time. He admonishes them for leaving the house without permission but he allows them to return to the courtroom later to hear the verdict. Excited and extremely proud of Atticus, the children feel that their side has surely won the case. They eagerly anticipate the verdict and return to the courthouse where they rejoin Reverend Sykes after supper. The jury takes longer than usual to return its verdict. When it does, however, the verdict is "guilty." Dumbstruck with disbelief, the children slide sadly into their seats. The lower level of the courtroom empties but the upper level, filled with black people, stand and wait for Atticus to depart. The black spectators respect Atticus for his effort and his obvious convictions. The trial therefore ends with complete unfairness and prejudice. ...read more.

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