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The Most Compelling Scene in 'The Crucible'

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Introduction

The Most Compelling Scene in 'The Crucible' 'A sound'. The scene that I find most compelling in the Crucible begins with this stage direction on page 116 and ends with Proctor's line 'It is evil and I do it' on page 120. In this scene, Elizabeth and John Proctor are allowed to talk together, alone, for the first time in three months. I find this scene compelling, as it creates a touching piece of drama to see the couple reunited again, and it is upsetting for the reader or audience to think that Proctor might be hung soon after. It also causes us to feel admiration for the strength of Elizabeth's character and the intensity of their relationship. Just after the entrance of Elizabeth, Proctor's feelings are blatant to those around him, and the lack of dialect from him, as well as the stage directions, shows us the passion he's feeling at this moment. As John and Elizabeth first see each other, Proctor ignores what Danforth has to say to him, and the repetition of the stage direction 'Proctor is silent, staring at Elizabeth' shows his coolness at Danforth, and how unnecessary and inadequate words are to express what he's feeling. As Parris makes his offer of cider 'from a safe distance', it shows that even he is aware of how potentially dangerous Proctor could be with the amount of emotion he is feeling as he makes sure that he is out of harm's way. ...read more.

Middle

Everything Proctor does indicates that he knows that what he is doing 'is evil' as he does not want Hathorne to 'cry out' the fact and let everyone know, and even though he knows that it is wrong, he cannot face the prospect of being hung. We also appreciate that Proctor's decision is a life or death decision, and that even telling his wife causes him a 'great force of will', yet we still judge him as selfish, like many of the characters in the book. We frown upon Proctor for feeling a 'flail of hope' as he asks if Goody Corey has confessed, as we think that it is wrong for him to hope that another who is influential has confessed and committed a sin just so that he might not be the only one who will have shame over his name. The repetition of the word 'agony' in Proctor's stage directions emphasise to us just how hard it is for him to confess and live with the guilt of doing such a thing when many others died for it. On the other hand, we feel consoled somewhat that in giving his soul away and yet receiving his life, Proctor would be able to live and take care of Elizabeth and their children, rather than die and leave them alone. Although we know that what Proctor wants to do is morally wrong, we are moved by how much he has endured so far, and cannot fully blame him for wanting to do so. ...read more.

Conclusion

It is as though in this scene, Proctor wishes Elizabeth to either tell him that he is condemning himself and confirm what he thinks, or to persuade him out of giving in. It is also the scene in which we hear about Giles Corey's death, and although he is not a main character, I think that each death that Proctor hears about, each death of people he knows and respects contributes to his final decision. It is not only the significance to the plot which leads me to think that scene is the most compelling, but also the intensity of John and Elizabeth Proctor's feelings, which are never portrayed anywhere else, as strong emotions in public were frowned upon by the Puritans. They are both strong characters, but in different ways; Elizabeth seems to be the redeeming light for the selfishness and deceit in Salem as she does what helps others and is right even though at risk of being hurt herself and Proctor is strong enough to have not confessed until now, even though he claims that 'spite only keeps [him] silent'. It is the addition to the plot that this scene brings, the revelation of the sheer depth of Proctor and Elizabeth's characters, the frank verity with which they speak to each other and the fact that the scene remains unfinished and unheard by any other characters gives me the basis of my argument that this scene is the most compelling in the play 'The Crucible'. http://cars.msn.co.uk/Fun/Jigsaw ferrari 360 modena n aston martin db9 Tabassum Tawhid 10Z English Coursework 1 ...read more.

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