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

Is John Proctor a hero in his stand against evil in his society or do you see him as a foolish when he might have easily saved his life?

Extracts from this document...


The Crucible Literary Essay ________________ Is John Proctor a hero in his stand against the evil in his society or do you see him as foolish when he might easily saved his life? John Proctor is the protagonist of Arthur Miller?s ?The Crucible? as he battles against the puritans of Salem who are determined upon ruining a ?witchery? they recognize to exist in their daily lives and little town. The author wrote the play in 1953, after observing the start of the modern witch persecution appearing in the United States. Miller wrote the arguable play as an indirect representation of something, which symbolizes a much deeper meaning. In this case, the play is about the Salem witch-hunt of the 1690s, but criticizes of history repeating these tragic and insane events in the fifties, where there was a communism trial. In that period, who was communist would be considered ?un-American?. This was called McCarthyism and was born to kill the tension between Russia (the communists) and America, the contenders of the ?Cold war?. While Proctor may be defined as a hero in his efforts to fight the manifestation of unfair treatment in his society, he can also be considered a defective hero. ...read more.


All the court wants to put him in the responsibility of judging. However, he ?speaks [his] own sins; [he] cannot judge another. [He] has no tongue for it? (P113). Miller, in this phrase, uses the role of Proctor as the ?complainer? against the idea of judging. In these protagonist?s few phrases the author intention is to say that the position of evaluating someone, on the good or bad side, is neither Proctor?s role nor Danforth?s. Only God has the right to say His opinion on others. Proctor is supporting this point and opposing against theocracy and the judges in the courtroom. On the other hand he might well be seen as foolish because he might had easily saved his life. He would have lived with his wife and children a happy life, possibly. Even though he would have lost his authority of sympathy and respect that he gained through the population of Salem, he would have left his wife pregnant on her own. ?Mr Proctor, have you seen the devil in your life? ... I did? (P111). In this quote, Miller made Proctor confess to make the reader think that the farmer did the right choice to sacrifice his name for his wife and children. ...read more.


As it stood, the protagonist did not tell the truth until it was too late, therefore costing many innocent souls, including his own. Following on, what caused the story to his eventual downfall was his affair with Abigail Williams. The girl accused blameless people of witchery in order to competently eliminate and erase Proctor?s wife Elizabeth from his life, supposing that if the farmer did not have his wife he would love Abigail instead. ?[Elisabeth] is blackening my name in the village! ? She is a cold snivelling woman, and you bend to her!? (P19) To finish, John Proctor is a honourable of his acknowledgement as a hero, even if having a few imperfections. He can be considered a hero because he decided to get executed instead of bringing dishonour upon himself and to the other prisoners. However, his major imperfection is his pride and the obsession with his fine name and account. If he had confessed to adultery, right at the start, maybe the whole event could have been avoided. John Proctor is not also a fool; even though what he does may appear so at the start, there are also other justifications behind his actions. His pride may be defined foolish, but the protagonist himself is not a nonsensical man. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate World Literature 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 International Baccalaureate World Literature essays

  1. Comparative Essay between Atticus Finch and John Proctor as Men of Conscience

    This shows that he is a man of principle as he is putting his own life in danger for the good of others. In the final act John has been arrested for corrupting the soul of Mary Warren. He has the choice to lie, by admitting he is guilty and naming others that were compacted with the devil.

  2. Analysis of When I Have Fears by John Keats

    After the slowing down of poetic rhythm, the caesura at the end of third quatrain, rapidly reaccelarates the poem by connecting to the last idea, couplet. The form of the poem is also influencing for the conveyance of main idea and purpose of the poet.

  1. In Time for a Tiger, Anthony Burgess impresses upon his readers that his heroes ...

    could be forgiven. Though he mentions his triumph over his wife's strict reign, I didn't feel as though the idea of "her tears of shame and chagrin" (pg. 142) were what made him so happy. He was elated because he realized his wife would finally have to accept him as being adequate even in his imperfections.

  2. The review of the film The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.

    It is even says that, when James Thurber read the script, he offered producer Samuel Goldwyn $10,000 to not make the film. I suppose that James Thurber did not like the film of Norman Z. McLeod because the director changed the main idea of the short story and the purpose of author's work.

  1. Much Ado About Nothing. Shakespeare constructs the characters of Don John and Claudio ...

    The intentions of Claudio can be seen to have no effect on the actual outcome of his actions. That is, whether he wants to marry Hero because of money and status, because of his love for her or because of both reasons, does not alter the consequence as the result still leads to him marrying her.

  2. Good and Evil - how do two Modern Classic Texts, The Lord of the ...

    I believes that Golding is trying to say that evil lies within each of us irrelevant of our experiences, however I think that it is experiences which completely define our concept of evil, because without experiences we wouldn't know what evil was or how to avoid it.

  1. The writer of Unman, Wittering and Zigo, and Giles Cooper criticises the educational system ...

    The regular students have a low rank but not as low as the bullied students. v. The bullied students like Wittering have the lowest rank because they are likely to be weaker and less physical than the regular students, which makes them an easy target for bullies.

  2. Reflection of Society in the "Grapes of Wrath"

    This unemployment in men required women of the individual families to fetch jobs and work to support themselves even in menial fields. Furthermore, as the World War II arrived, men were forced into participation in war by government conscription. Their occupations in workforces had to be substituted by women in

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