The Crucible Act one The beginning - What clues does it give us to the rest of the story?

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Krystina Dunn 10 W

Act one The beginning. What clues does it give us to the rest of the story?

Throughout act one, Arthur Miller gives the audience a small picture of what will happen later on. He introduces the key themes and emotions that occur frequently throughout the play, hysteria, fear and uncertainty.  

Arthur Miller writes a small overture describing the setting. He comments on the scene they are in. He describes the bedroom. The audience know that something is not right by the way it is described. “Raw and un-mellowed”. This is a description of the exposed roof rafters but it reflects the atmosphere in the room and it gives the audience an idea that something bad will happen in this room later on in the play.

In the room lays a girl. Her father, Reverend Parris is kneeling by her bedside, “evidently in prayer”. The overture makes the audience wary of Reverend Parris. The audience know that Betty, his daughter is sick. The audience may be confused as to why Reverend Parris, may in fact, not be praying for her. As the play progresses more is revealed about Reverend Parris. “There is very little good to say about him” and that he has “no interest in children”. The audience now get the impression that Reverend Parris is quite a bitter old man. As the play starts to unfold, the audience get the idea that Parris seems to be more worried about his own reputation than his daughter’s health. “My enemies will, and they will ruin me with it”. The audience now may think that Reverend Parris is actually praying for his own reputation.  

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Suspicions of Reverend Parris, throughout the audience, rise as act one progresses because of his actions.  Later on, Parris becomes a member of the court, dealing with the witchcraft hysteria.  The suspicions of the audience are confirmed.

Arthur Miller introduces most of the important characters in Act One. Reverend Parris is first introduced. He is introduced “praying”. Then the audience are introduced to Tituba, “His Negro slave” his meaning Parris’s. The audience immediately have sympathy for Tituba because the overture states, “trouble in the house eventually lands on her back”. The audience feel sorry for Tituba because she ...

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