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

Reputation: The Essence of Life, A Comparison of the Parallelisms between David Merrill and John Proctor.

Extracts from this document...


Wihlidal, Christopher, Period Two Wednesday, November 13, 2002 REPUTATION: THE ESSENCE OF LIFE A COMPARISON OF THE PARALLELISMS BETWEEN DAVID MERRILL AND JOHN PROCTOR A man's reputation is the focus of his life. A man takes pride in what he makes of himself, and his pride is what gives substance to his life. The loss of a man's pride reduces him to nothing and ultimately destroys him. Hence, the blackening of the main character's name in Guilty by Suspicion and The Crucible caused the destruction of his life. John Proctor, the main character in The Crucible, faced the choice between losing his life and losing his reputation-though to him there was no true difference. Abigail Williams, the antagonist of the play, accused John Proctor of being a witch. (The Crucible) The townspeople believed that Abigail was, "the finger of God," (The Crucible) since she confessed her involvement with witchcraft in the forest; the populace's believing her showed their utter obliviousness to Abigail's ulterior motives. However, it was the townspeople's fear of hell and Lucifer that that blinded them from the truth, as displayed when they believed the accusation against the reputable and honest John Proctor. ...read more.


reputation, the reputation of his friends and the reputation of his nine-year-old son, Paulie: "I want to be able to walk into a room with my friends. I want to be able to look at myself in the mirror." (Guilty by Suspicion) Many people wanted to know why Merrill didn't simply answer the government's questions: "Since when did you become this saint? ... If you want to make this picture, you gotta get yourself straightened up," said David's agent, questioning David's morals and trying to persuade him to reconsider for the sake of his career. (Guilty by Suspicion) "Why don't you just give them what they want?! ... I think you should leave (before anyone sees me with you)," (Guilty by Suspicion) said David's friend in New York, who took the same standpoint as David's agent. (Guilty by Suspicion) David's life was ruined the instant he was suspected; however, like John Proctor, his integrity was maintained by his not condemning innocent people. (Guilty by Suspicion) The harassment from the government had many effects on David Merrill. ...read more.


Through all of the harassment and distress he endured, David Merrill retained the support of his wife-much like John Proctor does in The Crucible-and is able to make the proper choice by not giving names. (Guilty by Suspicion) Both main characters in the two stories begin to falter in their morals: John Proctor untruthfully signed his name confirming his dealings with the devil and David Merrill went to court with the intention of giving names, "Am I supposed to spend the rest of my life dreaming what I could have been?" (Guilty by Suspicion) Nevertheless, both individuals eventually make the right choice: Proctor rips the confession stating he compacted with the devil, "You have my soul already. Must you take my name as well?" (The Crucible) and Merrill said to the judges, "I'm willing to answer any questions regarding myself, but I will not answer about or for anyone else." (Guilty by Suspicion) Both men showed their dignity and stood for their moral beliefs, rather than by taking the easy way out by submitting to the threats of others. Ultimately, both men salvage their lives that were once broken by lies and ignorance. ...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
  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work