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Discuss Miller(TM)s portrayal of John Procter(TM)s relationship with Abigail and Elizabeth with particular reference to acts one and two of The Crucible.(TM)

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Introduction

Discuss Miller's portrayal of John Procter's relationship with Abigail and Elizabeth with particular reference to acts one and two of 'The Crucible.' 'The Crucible,' was set in 1692 in a Puritan society and religion was vital to every day to day life in Salem. John Proctor has two very different relationships, one with his wife, Elizabeth Proctor, and one with a young seventeen year old girl, Abigail. As committing adultery is one of the Ten Commandments, John and Abigail committed a serious crime in the eyes of that society. Their relationship is a very passionate one in contrast to Proctor's and Elizabeth's relationship which is very forced in this act. One of the ways that Miller portrays the different relationships is through the language between John and Abigail shows anger, heat and passion, for example when Abigail mentions the fact that he was, 'sweating like a stallion,' whenever she was near him. This shows us that even though there is anger in the relationship, the passion is still there and there definitely was a connection between them even if there is not one now. ...read more.

Middle

As well as there being no warmth in the relationship, there is no forgiveness and the phrase that John says illustrates this. Another way in which Miller portrays the different relationships is through the stage directions. In act one with John and Elizabeth their actions symbolise, again, heat and passion, 'feverishly looking into his eyes.' Abigail shows most of the passion in the relationship and provokes him when she talks, 'tauntingly.' But John moves her, 'firmly,' out of the way. He knows that there is still a connection and there is a lot of contact between them both. Abigail is, 'grasping his hand,' because she does not want him to go, she demonstrates more contact. It is a meaningful conversation complete with meaningful actions, unlike with John and Elizabeth. Here in act one, Abigail, 'clutches him desperately,' and gets, 'anger,' in her voice a lot. This shows us that they are both not afraid to shows their emotions in front of one another and that they have an extremely interesting relationship. Stage directions between John and Elizabeth are much more reserved and secretive. ...read more.

Conclusion

The house is described as, 'low, dark,' and the living room is, 'empty.' This represents the fact there is no effort being put into the relationship, especially by Elizabeth, as John has been away for, 'eight days,' he comes back to a cold empty house that Elizabeth has kept. In the 1600's it was the woman's role to look after the house and keep it welcoming. On the whole the relationships that John Procter has with the two women are shown in very different ways in acts one and two. Act one between John and Abigail, there is a lot of heat and passion shown through their language and actions. But in act two, between John and Elizabeth, the atmosphere between them is demonstrated as cold and plenty of tension is shown. Their actions shows that there is no, or very little connection, like when John goes to kiss her she does not return it and there is a small amount of contact. The scenes are placed close to each other so that the differences are clear and that there is a clear contrast in the scenes and relationships. At this point in, 'The crucible,' we are convinced that John and Abigail's relationship would be the best one, even though the social rules are against them. ...read more.

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