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Long Essay - The Crucible

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Introduction

Long Essay - The Crucible * How is language used in The Crucible to express the emotional intensity of characters in conflict with each other and/or society and to convey the abstract ideas that emerge through that conflict? The Crucible is a play written by Arthur Miller in 1953. It is a prime example of dramatic theatre using powerful language to express emotional intensity of the characters in conflict with each other and their society. The language used also helps to convey the abstract ideas that emerge through that conflict by providing insights into the characters' personalities and values through their dialogue. There are many areas of conflict in The Crucible. Whether it be between individuals or the community, the language used helps to convey their feelings and emotions. The play begins with Reverend Parris praying for his now unconscious daughter Betty to wake from her mysterious sleep. He begins to suspect that there is something unnatural about her 'illness' and becomes suspicious about what actually went on in the forest that night. Parris questions his niece Abigail quite demandingly, causing Abigail to become defensive. ...read more.

Middle

Levels of education are indicated by the language used by the characters; some characters are made to be more expressive than others. For example, a speech of Proctor during Act II is as follows; 'I have gone tiptoe in this house this seven month since she (Abigail) is gone. I have not moved from here to there without I think to please you and still an everlasting funeral marches round your heart.' This shows that Proctor is a man who thinks deeply, and is more educated than some of the other characters. In contrast Mary Warren speaks more simply, 'I hear a voice, a screamin' voice, and it were my voice...' In Act III, being the climax of the play, there is a lot of conflict and confusion. Evidence is being heard from various characters in an attempt to identify 'witches' in the community. An important point in this Act is when John Proctor accuses Abigail of being a whore. She denies this, and Proctor confesses to adultery, which he hoped would destroy her credibility as a witness. However, Proctor's wife Elizabeth is called to the stand and denies this fact. ...read more.

Conclusion

Hale is begging Proctor to lie in order to avoid being hanged. He eventually confesses, but refuses to sign the confession, because he doesn't want to blemish his name. The heated conflict between Proctor and Hathorne over signing the confession brings in the religious concept of goodness versus evil. For example, Danforth says, 'You should rejoice to say it if your soul is truly purged of any love for Hell', Proctor says, 'They think to go like saints', and 'this woman never thought she done the devils work.' The honesty and integrity of John Proctor are highlighted in this scene. His strong statements such as, 'God does not need my name nailed upon the church! God sees my name; God knows how black my sins are! It is enough!' forces the reader to reflect on what the true meaning of honesty is. Does Proctor need to sign a sheet of paper in order to publicly confess his sins? Or is his word enough? The language used throughout The Crucible is designed to express the emotional intensity of the characters in their conflicts with each other and their society. Through these trials and tribulations and how the characters react to them, abstract ideas such as honesty, integrity, and loyalty are brought to light. ?? ?? ?? ?? Alex Clark 11.9 ...read more.

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