John Proctor's Reputation In The Crucible

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According to founding father Thomas Paine, “Reputation is what men and women think of us; character is what God and angels know of us” (“Reputation”). Whether individuals readily admit it or not, everyone cares about what others think or say about them to some extent. Though people are constantly told to not take to heart what others believe about them, they still do. In Arthur Miller’s drama, The Crucible, Salem’s society is collapsing and innocent characters are taking action because their reputation is at stake due to the false accusations of involving themselves in witchcraft. These characters live in such fear that if their pride is tarnished they will never recover from it. It is ironic, however, that in this strict Puritan society where …show more content…

This demonstrates how distraught Parris has become due to the constant fear he experiences from losing the town’s interest in his preaching. Fearful of losing his followers, Parris denies hard facts and abandons his daughter to keep himself from losing any more traction in the town. In The Crucible, well respected individuals show how simple it is for someone to take his eyes off God in fear of losing his reputation. One respected member in Salem is John Proctor. After being held in prison for months, Proctor is given one more chance to confess before he is hanged in order to save his life. Danforth asks why Proctor will not hand over the signed confession to be displayed on the church door when Proctor has already confessed his sins, Proctor replies, “Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life!” (133). Proctor’s passionate response characterizes him as someone who cares deeply about his reputation. He cannot bear to give his confession to Danforth because he is so afraid of what will happen to his reputation if his name is hung on the church to be publically shamed. Furthermore, Proctor clearly cares for his reputation by saying that he cannot give up his name since, to him,

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