Examples Of Conformity In The Crucible

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In Salem, Massachusetts, the witch trials of 1692 revealed the town’s masquerade, leaving nothing but the truth. Arthur Miller utilized this event to confront the idea of conformity in American culture, as well as ideas of justice and principle. Each of the characters in The Crucible, through their personal struggles, further discloses the nature of humans and social structure. Miller has the ability to dissect the causes of such moral conflicts using their motives, actions, and individual pressures, which still remain relevant in modern-day constructs such as American politics. To begin, as one of the prominent characters throughout the story, Reverend Hale’s conflicts are initiated by his personal commitment to God. In Act I, Hale is characterized …show more content…

In doing so, he creates personal conflicts from the pressure he places on himself to be that person. As the corruption in Salem becomes revealed, it only deepens Proctor’s conflicts, as he truly wishes to right the injustice he sees. However, his frailty as a human leaves him susceptible to mistakes, namely his affair with Abigail Williams. He believes it has irreparably damaged him in the eyes of his wife and in the eyes of God. Distraught, Proctor views himself as a sinner and as a person unworthy of the esteem given to him. In court, he dreads disclosing his sin because the guilt he places on himself has already overwhelmed him. As seen when he shreds the paper he signed, Proctor believes a public display of his wrongdoing only intensifies the extent of his sin, thereby multiplying his guilt, as well as damaging his reputation. His family’s reputable status would be ruined due to the shame placed upon them; Proctor realizes the predicament is no longer solely about himself but about his family, too. Despite being pressured to make one choice over the other, Proctor objectively weighs both sides of the conflict and concludes that he cannot live with another lie, having seen the consequences of lying about the choices he made in the past. Therefore, he sentences himself to be hanged, sacrificing his own life to avoid living as someone he is

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