Character Analysis Of Rev Hale In The Crucible

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The Crucible is a play centered around the Salem Witch Trials, which the author uses to reflect on human nature. Rev. Hale is an expert in witchcraft from Beverly, a town near Salem, and starts off by assisting the court in judging those accused. In The Crucible by Arthur Miller, Rev. Hale changes from feeling confident and justified in his beliefs to feeling uncertainty and guilt about what he has done through his manner, how he is portrayed, and his views of the trials.

In Act One of The Crucible, Rev. Hale’s current demeanor, portrayal, and views are revealed. Throughout the play, Rev. Hale is seen as a respected expert in witchcraft. He comes in carrying “half a dozen heavy books,” (I, 926-927) which illustrate his expertise. Usually,
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Hale has finished his change in attitude, actions, and views of the court. In the final act, Rev. Hale is back in Salem to ease his guilt from the trials. His plan is to get those who will hang to “confess,” (IV, 167) as dying due to hubris is a worse sin than lying. Due to his complete change, Rev. Hale also sees the errors of his ways, and wishes to correct them. When Danforth finds out that Rev. Hale is visiting, he is angry, but Rev. Parris says that his actions are “a providence,” (IV, 163) or an act of God. Rev. Parris at least pretends to see, regardless of their previous differences, that Rev. Hale is trying to do the right thing, and encourages it. While Rev. Parris must have other motives- such as his fear of “danger” (IV, 301) from other citizens- he still acts like he cares, which is a far cry from the previous act, when Rev. Parris disagreed with Rev. Hale vocally ever since he began defending Proctor. After Rev. Hale was unsuccessful with his attempts to get the others to confess, he says “there is blood on my head,” (IV, 399-400) illustrating how badly he really feels about the whole situation. The blood is used as a metaphor for the deaths of those who have hanged throughout these trials, as he was critical in their start. Even further, he feels remorse about having to tell those who will hang to confess, as he is trying to correct his sins by asking others to sin. In the beggining, Rev. Hale was very enthusiastic and informative, coming off as an expert who knows what he is doing. At this point, however, Rev. Hale comes off as hysterical and full of guilt, feeling the weight of the deaths he has caused. By act four, Rev. Hale’s demeanor, portrayal, and views of the court are fully changed, and he is a new
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