• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How Does Arthur Miller Create Dramatic Tension Within The Play 'The Crucible'.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How Does Arthur Miller Create Dramatic Tension Within The Play 'The Crucible' Arthur Miller wrote 'The Crucible' in 1953. The play was written so that Miller could show how the McCarthyism in 1950's America related to the witchcraft that happened in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692. A man called Senator Joe McCarthy began McCarthyism. Joe exploited the American fears about Communism and managed to create a national campaign against Communists. As Chairman of the House Un-American Activities Committee, he interrogated many witnesses and tried to make them inform on friends and colleagues. Powerful figures were happy to support McCarthy. McCarthy was gradually brought into disrepute and in 1954; he was removed as Chairman of the Committee after it was proved that he and his associates had been falsifying evidence. However, the witch-hunt continued for a few years and Arthur Miller himself was called in front of the committee in 1956. Miller refused to give the names of friends who might have been interested in Communism. As a result, Miller was fined for contempt of Congress. McCarthyism and the witchcraft in Salem are related because in both circumstances, innocent people were punished. ...read more.

Middle

(Danforth replies)." Sometimes Miller mixes different types of character on stage at the same time which heightens the tension. This works especially well in the courtroom in Act 3 when Abigail pretends to be clutched by a spirit, all the girls do the same and then the person being tried (the innocent) is convicted! "Abby, stop it!" (Mary says). "Abby, stop it! (girls repeat)." This takes the attention away from Abigail just as she may be found out. Miller makes the characters speak at different speeds (sometimes quick, sometimes slow), which creates tension, it sounds more realistic. Miller sometimes has the characters interrupt each other at critical moments. A good example of this is when Abigail and Proctor are talking to one another in Act 1, and Betty claps her ears suddenly and whines loudly. This brings Parris rushing in. "What happened? What are you doing to her? Betty!" At this point, Mrs Putnam, Thomas Putnam and Mercy Lewis also enter. In the play there are many such interruptions that create tension. The audience then wonders why the person is interrupting, what do they want or need or what have they done? ...read more.

Conclusion

This draws the audience into the play, making them frustrated again as well as giving the play more tension as the audience will be expecting something to happen. This is illustrated in Act 3, the courtroom scene. After Mary has given a disposition to the Court, swearing that she never saw apparitions, Judge Danforth decides to question Abigail and the children, in an attempt to find out the truth. Miller wants the audience to think that Abigail is about to be found out. "But if she speak true, I bid you drop now your guile and confess your pretence, for a quick confession will go easier with you. Abigail Williams, rise. Is there any truth in this?" However, Abigail doesn't tell the truth. "I have naught to change, sir. She lies." Miller makes Abigail pass the blame onto Goody Proctor. She does this by lying about the poppets. "Goody Proctor always kept poppets." This creates another storyline which frustrates the audience as they wonder what's going to happen next and whether Abigail will be found guilty or not. Having studied the play 'The Crucible', I have come to the conclusion that Arthur Miller has used various techniques such as speed of dialogue, character interruption, curtain use, empty stage and activity off stage to create dramatic tension for the audience. 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Arthur Miller section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Arthur Miller essays

  1. Discuss the role that grudges and rivalries play within The Crucible by Arthur Miller

    From this speech by Abigail Williams the audience can see Abigail Williams controlling the other girls that danced with her in the forest. By use of the word "black", Abigail Williams tries to remind the other girls of the devil and scare them.

  2. How Does Arthur Miller Present The Characters of Abigail and Elizabeth and Shape Our ...

    Miller presents throughout 'The Crucible' the impact of Abigail's language and how one lie she tells has a domino effect on the status and livelihood of other characters within the play and how just one lie can grasp the belief and faith, as well as fear, of the judges of the court.

  1. How Does Arthur Miller use Theatrical Techniques and Dramatic Devises to Create and Sustain ...

    Abigail presents herself to Proctor as the object of his desires. She uses language in an attempt to arouse Proctor to be drawn to her again. Abigail and Proctor's relationship has a big effect on Elizabeth and Proctor's relationship. At the end, Elizabeth is in the moving situation of performing

  2. The Crucible by Arthur Miller - Abigail Williams - Character Study.

    He sees himself as the one to seek out the devil and destroy it, and then send it back to Hell. This makes him slightly elevated in his opinions and others. He feels he has the definitive view of right and wrong, good and bad, this then makes him merciless; he doesn't seem to be a man of reason.

  1. The Crucible - "How does MIller create tension in Act 1

    This shows that there must be something in Abigail conscience causing her doubts. The audience are waiting in their seats to see when Abigail will break and no longer hide the truth away or do something else more disastrous.

  2. Dramatic tension is created by Miller throughout the Crucible in many ways. Straightaway, the ...

    The characters of the judges and Parris are irresponsible and corrupt; this causes mischief and tension in Salem. Miller portrays Parris as a week greedy man who tries to blacken a good man's name. Parris's ignorance is shown when he hides the vital evidence of him witnessing the girls dancing

  1. All My Sons - How does Miller create dramatic tension in this extract from ...

    Miller's authorial purpose in this scene is to create contrast in tension in order to make the audience prepared for the great conflict and negative tension yet to come later on in the play. He illustrates Ann's delicate and fragile worries and feelings towards Chris' family, which are created through

  2. By What means does Miller create a sense of Expectations within his audience in ...

    his feelings in what he does not what he says, so this causes conflict between Marco and Eddie because they find it hard to communicate with each over. This lack of verbal expression causes problems between the two men because they do not understand each over, when you don't talk

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work